The complex scenario of obesity, diabetes and hypertension in the area of influence of primary healthcare facilities in Mexico.

PloS one. 2018;13(1):e0187028

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Plain language summary

According to the National Health and Nutrition Survey, 73% of adult population in Mexico lived with at least one chronic condition, such as diabetes, hypertension and coronary heart diseases. Obesity is one of the main risk factors for developing these chronic diseases. The target of this study was to characterise the status of obesity, hypertension and diabetes and factors associated to the prevalence of these chronic conditions in the adult population in Mexico. This study used cross-sectional observational method and explored the various risk markers through a survey that included analysis of body composition, food consumption and physical activity. The survey result showed that amongst the studied population, people with higher education have 90% less probability of living with diabetes than those with no education. The authors concluded that change in diet patterns and imparting knowledge in planning meals can play an important role in the aetiology of the prevalent chronic diseases.


INTRODUCTION Among non-communicable chronic diseases (NCCD), diabetes and hypertension are the main cause of adult mortality worldwide. Among the members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Mexico is first in prevalence of diabetes and second in obesity. To face this problematic situation of NCCDs the Ministry of Health declared a national epidemiological alert against the overweight, obesity and diabetes. The target of this study is to characterize the status of obesity, diabetes and hypertension in the adult population in the area of influence of primary health facilities located in high social marginality areas. METHODS We conducted a cross-sectional observational study and used a convenience sample. A survey was conducted on a population of 18 years old and above in four primary health facilities in four Mexican States. The survey explored sociodemographic characteristics, the presence of chronic diseases, the access to healthcare services, risk factors and life styles. We also applied a complementary questionnaire to 20% of the participants, in order to explore food consumption during the last week and physical activity (International Physical Activity Questionnaire). We based our analysis on descriptive statistics and logistic multivariate regression to analyze factors associated with diabetes and hypertension. RESULTS 73% (n = 7531, CI 0.72-0.74) percent of the population reported being diabetic, hypertensive and/or overweight. The majority of them receive healthcare in public health services. People over 40 years old, are 11 times more probable of living with diabetes and 8.7 times more probable of living with hypertension. Both conditions affect mostly women, whose main activity is to be a housewife. People who have lunch and dinner out of home are more likely to develop diabetes. People who perform intense physical activity are less likely to live with hypertension. CONCLUSION According to the self-report, more than 70% of adult population living in areas with high social marginality suffer diabetes, hypertension and obesity. However, the percentage of people who live with these chronic conditions and are not aware of them, is unknown. The Mexican health system needs a primary healthcare that emphasizes on health promotion, timely detection of risk factors of Non Communicable Diseases and prevention of their complications.

Functional medicine

Fundamental Clinical Imbalances : Immune and inflammation ; Structural
Patient Centred Factors : Triggers/Overweight and obesity
Environmental Inputs : Diet ; Nutrients ; Physical exercise
Personal Lifestyle Factors : Exercise and movement
Functional Laboratory Testing : Blood

Methodological quality

Allocation concealment : Not applicable