Co-existence of High Levels of Undernutrition and Hypertension among Sabar Males of Purulia, West Bengal, India: A Paradox

Undernutrition and Hypertension among Sabar men

  • Kaustav Das Department of Anthropology, Bangabasi College, Kolkata- 700 009, India
  • Koel Mukherjee Anthropological Survey of India, Andaman & Nicobar Regional Centre, Port Blair 744 101, India
  • Mahua Chanak Department of Anthropology, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore 721 102, India
  • Somosree Pal Department of Anthropology, Bangabasi College, Kolkata- 700 009, India
  • Sayak Ganguli Theoretical and Computational Biology Unit, AIIST - Palta and The Biome, Kolkata – 700 064, India
  • Subrata Sankar Bagchi Department of Anthropology, Bangabasi College, Kolkata 700 009, India
  • Kaushik Bose Department of Anthropology, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore 721 102, India


Background:  Undernutrition, particularly Chronic Energy Deficiency (CED), among tribal males is a major health problem in India. In the recent years, prevalence of Hypertension (HT) is increasing among them. Our  cross sectional study assessed the nutritional status as well as prevalence of HT and compare the association of different anthropometric and blood pressure (BP) variables with age among Sabar adult males of Purulia District, West Bengal, India.

Research Methods: Measurements of height, weight, hip and waist circumferences, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and pulse rate of 215 adults aged 18-63 years were taken following standard procedure and calibrated machines. Body Mass Index (BMI), Waist-Hip Ratio (WHR), Waist-to-Height Ratio (WHtR), Conicity Index (CI) and Mean Arterial Pressure (MAP) were calculated. The ANOVA and Chi Square tests and correlation analysis were performed to test for significant differences and association between variables. Statistical significant was set at 0.05.  

Results: The coexistence of high prevalence of undernutrition based on BMI (CED = 47.0%) and HT (37.7%) among adult male Sabars was observed. 

Conclusion: Paradoxically, there existed a high prevalence of CED and HT among Sabar men.  Further research is required to fully understand the mechanism behind this paradox.  Apparently, this population seems to suffer from a double burden of high CED and HT.  Similar studies should also be undertaken among other tribal populations (both men and women) to determine whether such a paradox exists among them. 

Keywords: Sabar; Body Mass Index; Chronic Energy Deficiency; Blood pressure; Hypertension


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Das, K., Mukherjee, K., Chanak, M., Pal, S., Ganguli, S., Bagchi, S., & Bose, K. (2019). Co-existence of High Levels of Undernutrition and Hypertension among Sabar Males of Purulia, West Bengal, India: A Paradox. International Journal of Advancement in Life Sciences Research, 2(4), 38-47. Retrieved from