A Comparative Study of Health, Nutrition and Socio-Psycho Behaviour of Adolescent Boys and Girls

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A Comparative Study of Health, Nutrition and Socio-Psycho Behaviour of Adolescent Boys and Girls

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Title: A Comparative Study of Health, Nutrition and Socio-Psycho Behaviour of Adolescent Boys and Girls
Author: Tahira Bano, (Scholar); Khan, Nilofer (Guide); Imtiyaz Ali, (Guide)
Abstract: This thesis is an outcome of Ph.D research project entitled “A Comparative Study of Health, Nutrition and Socio- Psycho Behavior of Adolescent Boys and Girls.” The field work of this thesis has been undertaken in six districts of Kashmir valley i.e. Srinagar, Budgam, Anantnag, Kupwara, Pulwama and Baramulla, covering a sample of 1500 adolescents i.e. 750 boys and equal number of girls in the age group of 10-19 years, studying in Government Schools during 2004-07. The findings of the study are interesting and useful for framing programme guidelines towards adolescent development. During last couple of years, various policies have been formulated to bring adolescents to the centre stage of development planning. These policies are National Health Policies 2002, the National Population Policy 2000, the National AID’S Policy 2001, the Woman Policy 2001, the Child and Education Policy, Scheme for Adolescent Girls (Kishori Shakti Yojana) etc. All these policies have addressed the adolescents of the age of 10-19 years. The present study critically examines different dimensions of health, nutrition and socio-psycho behavior of both rural and urban adolescents of Kashmir valley. The suggestions of the study demand interventions to be initiated by Government, parents, teachers, NGO’s, academic institutes and health workers. Adolescence is a period between childhood and adulthood during which the individual learns the skills needed to flourish as an adult. Although adolescence begins with the biological series of events called puberty, some authors suggest that adolescence was culturally “invented” during the last century and defined it as a period in which the individual could gain the complex skills necessary to navigate adulthood in a Western culture. Puberty, the beginning of adolescence, is marked by dramatic physical changes in both growth rate and sexual characteristics (Gluckberg 1980; Field 1995). The initial adolescent growth spurt and the fast signs of the developing secondary sex characteristic signal the onset of a period of rapid physical growth. In boys active growth and development of pubic hair and facial hair usually precede such other signs of puberty as voice change. In girls rapid growth in height usually begins about 2 ½years before menarche. The growth spurt generally begins at age 12 or 13 years in boys and 10-11 years for girls. In both the sexes it takes about four and a half years from the completion of the first appearance of secondary sex characteristics (Tanner 1962). The amount of growth also varies from one individual to another. The average height gain of girls in the child research council series was 31cms between the onset of acceleration and final cessation of growth in stature but individual girls ranged from 18-39 cms. The average gain of boys was 33 cms with a range of 21-45 cms. The individual has need of more nutrients to support such a gain in contrast to the individual with relatively small increase in body size. Physical growth, hormonal secretion, body composition and other aspects of physiological development are so inter woven during adolescence that it is difficult to compartmentalize them. Throughout life different physiological functions reach maturity at different periods (Thissen 1976). Approximately 80 per cent of BMR is derived from metabolic activity of internal organs. Total body water increases from birth to 20 years, as tissues grow and is higher in males than females.Blood volume during adolescence is greater than the provisional increase in weight. Plasma volume /kg remain constant. The RBC count of male is more than 5 million/mm while the female maintains an average close to 4.7 million/mm during adolescence. The height rate of an individual is highly variable. The blood pressure tends to be higher in males and continue to rise and in females at 14 years it remains constant (Virginia 1980). Skipping meals and having snacks during adolescence is common. With their often-busy schedule, an adolescent may rush off to school without having breakfast. In the evening rather than waiting for dinner he/she may grab a snack. Consequently he/she eats fewer meals at home where parents can provide them with nutritious foods. When away from home, an adolescent eats meals that are acceptable to a peer group. This may mean snacks in the form of fast foods and ready to eat foods (Drummond 1996; Gregary 2000). Nutrient needs during adolescence are dictated by the rate of growth. Requirement increases at the onset of growth spurt, reaches their maximum at the time of peak growth and gradually approach adult levels as growth subsides (Srilakshmi 2002). Psychology of adolescent is of vital importance for the future functioning of the society. It is during this period that physical, intellectual, emotional, psychosocial, social, religious and moral maturity begins to take place. Adolescents are generally moody and sulky and burst into tears on the slightest provocation especially the girls. Their feelings are easily hurt. An adolescent when emotionally aroused simply bursts out and is unable to control behavior. Jammu and Kashmir is a land of diversities and disparities professing diverse religion, language and culture. Since health and nutrition of people are influenced by a number of conditions in a multi-pronged manner, therefore, a comparative study of health, nutrition and socio-psycho behaviour of adolescent boys and girls” seemed important. The present study aimed to establish the local base line data relevant to the health, nutrition and socio-psycho behaviour of boys and girls in six districts of Kashmir Valley. The study was undertaken with following objectives:  To assess the nutritional status of adolescent through anthropometrics measurements (height and weight).  To comprehend the present health, sickness status and the past illness of the adolescents.  To study the dietary habits and nutritional intake of the adolescents.  To know various food taboos among adolescents.  To workout the effect of mass media on food preferences and intake of adolescents.  To know socio-psycho behavioral problems among adolescents.  To see the inclination of adolescents towards physical activities.
URI: http://dspaces.uok.edu.in/jspui//handle/1/962
Date: 2012


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