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Dietary habits and menarche among young female medical students

Arbind Kumar Choudhary, Rekha Jiwane, Tanwir Alam, Sadawarte Sahebrao Kishanrao.


Background: Menstrual cycle is a physiological change that occurs in female subjects. The first menstruation of women is called menarche. The developmental status of a pubertal female can be assessed using this vital maturity indicator. The age of menarche is determined by number of factors such as general health, genetic factors, and socioeconomic and nutritional statuses.

Aims and Objective: To find out the role of different dietary habit of vegetarian, eggetarian, and nonvegetarian on age at menarche and academic performance among young girls.

Materials and Methods: The data were collected through personal interview technique using the especially structured questionnaire. The general profile, dietary habits, and menarcheal profile of the subjects were collected. The height and weight of the subjects were measured by standardized methods. The body mass index of the subjects were calculated and categorized accordingly. The academic performance of the girls was measured using the percentage marks obtained by the end of the academic year.

Result: The nonvegetarian girls revealed early menarche and prolonged menstrual cycle and menses when compared with vegetarian and eggetarians counterparts, and they were more prone to overweight and obese. However, in academic performance nonvegetarian showed better performance than vegetarian and eggetarians.

Conclusion: Our observation concludes that nonvegetarians was more prone to overweight and obese, early menarche, prolonged menstrual cycle and duration of menses, but better in academic performance than eggetarians and vegetarians, this change of normal menstrual pattern of young women may affect their well-being. Health education is needed about menstrual pattern. We recommend proper advice on diet and exercise, which will improve health, sense of well-being, and overall quality of life of the students.

Key words: Menarche, Menstrual, Dietary Habit, Educational Performance

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