International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition

International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition


International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition
International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition
Vol. 2, Issue 2 (2017)

A study on the nutritional status of Jain women


Ayushi Himesh Shah, Dr. Rekha Battalwar

Background: Dietary restrictions are emphasized as part of the religious canon; communities can utilize these rules to further control a woman’s practice and body. Jains, whose identity is based on the rejection of many “sinful” foods. Aim: This research was conducted to study the nutritional status of Jain women. Methodology: A cross sectional study was conducted in Mumbai among 100 women aged between 30-45 years. Anthropometric measurement was measured. Eating habits were assessed by a structured questionnaire which included questions on eating habits, food frequency and three day diet recall. Analyses were performed by SPSS software (SPSS, version 16). Data was presented using Independent Sample Z-test, chi-square test, Pearson’s correlation. P-value < 0.05 was considered to be statistically significant. Results: It was observed from the study that participants fasted regularly resulting in nutrition deficiency among Jain women. It was observed that the BMI and WHR of the participants were normal. The study showed that the Jain women willingly restrict certain foods due to cultural beliefs. Macro and micro nutrient deficiency seen among the participants except iron may be due high consumption of green leafy vegetables during winter season. Conclusion: Cultural beliefs, strict religious diet practices, restriction of certain foods willingly collectively might have led to nutrient deficiency in the Jain women.
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