Kg Kapok residents exceed healthy BMI mark: Study

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A STUDY on diabetes conducted on residents of Kg Kapok, Brunei-Muara district, found that more than half of them exceeded the healthy Body Mass Index range, while nearly half had high blood pressure.

Diabetes is a long-term condition that causes high blood sugar levels.

The research on diabetes was conducted by a former Universiti Brunei Darussalam student of Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa’adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences, as part of her third year medical degree course.

Out of the 150 residents, only 60 participants were successfully screened and managed to answer questionnaires due to the time limitation, said Shi Ying Tan.

The study showed there was a significant increase in knowledge and positive attitude towards the management of diabetes after the intervention.

The study also found that 66 per cent or 39 out of the 60 respondents were found to exceed the healthy BMI mark (18 to 25).

A total of 19 participants were obese and 20 were overweight.

Out of the 60 participants, 49 per cent or 27 of the Kg Kapok residents were hypertensive.

Tan said the study was held to determine the resident’s level of knowledge on Diabetes Mellitus (DM) among residents of Kampung Kapok.

“Diabetes is prevalent in Brunei and it’s the third leading cause of death. Although a lot of elderly suffer from it, they’re not fully aware of their own condition,” said Tan.

The study conducted in 2014 saw participation from 150 Kampong Kapok residents aged 18 years and above.

Being hypertensive or having uncontrolled high blood pressure can cause several long-term damage to one’s health including stroke, heart failure and damage to other organs.

“This was an upsetting phenomenon as both overweight and hypertension is a risk factor for Type 2 DM,” said Tan.

The medical student pointed out that seven of the participants were on diabetes medication, two of them – despite under medications to control diabetes – had borderline high random blood glucose levels.

Out of 60 screened participants, one person had high random blood glucose without knowing.

“Most of them were not on any medications, some were aware that they had high blood pressure,” said Tan.

Those with higher than usual blood pressure were referred to the clinics,” she said.

The study was also held as part of a diabetes awareness campaign, which saw health experts discuss with residents in Kg Kapok about diabetes and ways to prevent the disease.

“Patient education is very important. If you are already diabetic, you must be compliant towards the medications given and exercise regularly,” she said, adding that stroke, heart attacks, kidney problems, blindness and amputations may arise from severe diabetes complications.

The Brunei Times