Nutrition, as an integral part of the health care paradigm, has been frequently associated with various socio-economic factors that contribute to people’s access to nutrition and behavioral patterns. In order to define possible regularities in terms of the population’s nutrition, socio-economic status, health conditions, and perceived health status, various researchers conduct empirical studies with the help of specifically tailored surveys and assessment tools. The study discussed in the present paper will concern the notion of nutrition in the context of the elderly population in the slum dwellings of India (Khole 353). The primary research focuses on the link establishment between Indian older adults’ nutrition and weight and their poor financial and social environment.
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According to the author, the primary objective of the study was to analyze and assess the health and nutrition status among the urban slum-dwelling elderly population (Khole 356). To meet the identified objective, Khole (356) formulated two major research questions focusing on the overall nutrition level among the population and their average level of perceived health status (PHS). One of the major strengths of the present research is the author’s explicit introduction to the matter of malnutrition among the older population regardless of financial status and location because every person, with age, loses the abilities of proper metabolism and accessing meal with no external support. Having presented the relevance of the topic, Khole (356) gradually moved to the tangible aspects of the research.
Thus, when speaking of the methodology, the author decided to dwell on the survey method, the results of which were eventually interpreted through the prism of a cross-sectional descriptive study design. The study sample comprised 431 people aged 60-104 (185 males and 246 females), with mean age constituting 68.5 years (Khole 358).
The data was gathered with the help of an exhaustive structured questionnaire, encompassing such notions as gender, age, education, diseases, perceived health status, anthropometry (weight, height, and BMI), and nutrition status. Each of the categories obtained an extensive list of variables. On the one hand, such a variety was beneficial for the overall research and establishment of relevant tendencies in the field. On the other hand, such an extensive category list makes it confusing in terms of responding to the two central research questions presented earlier.
In the result discussion section, the author presented the findings of a similar study conducted in the rural area (Khole 360). Considering the fact that the results of this study indicated a strong connection between one’s health status and nutrition, Khole (362) was willing to either criticize or justify such a hypothesis with his study. The comparison introduced was, by all means, beneficial in the context of result interpretation, providing the recipient with a perspective.
The results of the study indicated no explicit correlation between one’s health condition or educational background and the level of nutrition. It is imperative to mention that out of 100% of the respondents, only 37% had normal nutrition status, and out of this 37%, the majority of respondents perceived their health status as average (Khole 361). Interestingly enough, the vast majority of overweight respondents also defined their health status as average.
Thus, it may be concluded that the study indicates an explicit gap between people’s access to proper nutrition and perceived health status. The authors recommend comparing these results with the empirical studies conducted in other city parts in order to obtain a better perspective on the issue. Having taken this data into consideration, it may be concluded that the present study, while raising quite an important matter in terms of public health research, does not obtain much insightful information due to its eagerness to capture as much data as possible within one study.
Khole, Chaitra. “Perceived Health Status and Nutrition Status among Slum-Dwelling Elderly in Pune City.” Indian Journal of Gerontology, vol. 34, no. 3, 2020, pp. 353–367.