Background: This study aimed to explore post-migration lifestyle and weight changes in a sample of migrant women recruited in Modena, Italy. Taking into account the importance of the perceived personal susceptibility in improving prevention and treatment seeking behaviors, we further investigated women’s self-recognition of overweight/obesity. We also examined the changes in self-perceived quality of life after the arrival in Modena. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 97 female migrants visiting a family counseling in Modena. Socio-demographic information, post-migration changes in lifestyle, dietary habits and selfperceived quality of life were obtained by administering an anonymous questionnaire, created ad hoc with expert consultation and previously tested in a pilot study. Thereafter blood pressure, height and weight were measured. Results: More than half of the sample met criteria for overweight/obesity and 58% reported a weight increase after the arrival in Italy. The increased risk of weight gain after migration was significantly associated with women age, lower education level, African ethnicity and post-migration increased consumption of cheese and snacks/sweets. After applying a conditional multiple logistic regression, ethnicity, age and increased post-migration cheese consumption remained the main predictors of weight gain. More than half of subjects with BMI ≥25 Kg/m2 were not aware of their own overweight or obesity. Such weight underestimation was more common in African migrants than in other ethnicities. Findings about the perceived quality of life showed an overall improved economic situation, although more than half of women revealed deterioration in their social relationships after migration. Conclusions: Our results are important to identify the gaps in the current migrant populations’ health promotion in Modena and suggest that strategies to support female migrants to reinforce good dietary patterns may be the key in preventing unhealthy weight gain. Indeed, understanding immigrant women’s culture, beliefs and traditions of their country of origin, as well as food acculturation, is essential to improve the efficiency of these interventions.

Lifestyle and food habits changes after migration: a focus on immigrant women in Modena (Italy) / Casali, Maria Elisabetta; Borsari, Lucia; Marchesi, Isabella; Borella, Paola; Bargellini, Annalisa. - In: ANNALI DI IGIENE MEDICINA PREVENTIVA E DI COMUNITÀ. - ISSN 1120-9135. - STAMPA. - 27:5(2015), pp. 748-759. [10.7416/ai.2015.2067]

Lifestyle and food habits changes after migration: a focus on immigrant women in Modena (Italy)

Casali, Maria Elisabetta;BORSARI, Lucia;MARCHESI, Isabella;BORELLA, Paola;BARGELLINI, Annalisa
2015-01-01

Abstract

Background: This study aimed to explore post-migration lifestyle and weight changes in a sample of migrant women recruited in Modena, Italy. Taking into account the importance of the perceived personal susceptibility in improving prevention and treatment seeking behaviors, we further investigated women’s self-recognition of overweight/obesity. We also examined the changes in self-perceived quality of life after the arrival in Modena. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 97 female migrants visiting a family counseling in Modena. Socio-demographic information, post-migration changes in lifestyle, dietary habits and selfperceived quality of life were obtained by administering an anonymous questionnaire, created ad hoc with expert consultation and previously tested in a pilot study. Thereafter blood pressure, height and weight were measured. Results: More than half of the sample met criteria for overweight/obesity and 58% reported a weight increase after the arrival in Italy. The increased risk of weight gain after migration was significantly associated with women age, lower education level, African ethnicity and post-migration increased consumption of cheese and snacks/sweets. After applying a conditional multiple logistic regression, ethnicity, age and increased post-migration cheese consumption remained the main predictors of weight gain. More than half of subjects with BMI ≥25 Kg/m2 were not aware of their own overweight or obesity. Such weight underestimation was more common in African migrants than in other ethnicities. Findings about the perceived quality of life showed an overall improved economic situation, although more than half of women revealed deterioration in their social relationships after migration. Conclusions: Our results are important to identify the gaps in the current migrant populations’ health promotion in Modena and suggest that strategies to support female migrants to reinforce good dietary patterns may be the key in preventing unhealthy weight gain. Indeed, understanding immigrant women’s culture, beliefs and traditions of their country of origin, as well as food acculturation, is essential to improve the efficiency of these interventions.
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Lifestyle and food habits changes after migration: a focus on immigrant women in Modena (Italy) / Casali, Maria Elisabetta; Borsari, Lucia; Marchesi, Isabella; Borella, Paola; Bargellini, Annalisa. - In: ANNALI DI IGIENE MEDICINA PREVENTIVA E DI COMUNITÀ. - ISSN 1120-9135. - STAMPA. - 27:5(2015), pp. 748-759. [10.7416/ai.2015.2067]
Casali, Maria Elisabetta; Borsari, Lucia; Marchesi, Isabella; Borella, Paola; Bargellini, Annalisa
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11380/1080057
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