Anthropometry as a Tool of Measurement of Nutritional Status of Adolescent Girls

  • J. Poonkuzhali Research Scholar, Department of Women’s Studies, Alagappa University, Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu, India
  • K. R. Murugan Head, Department of Social Work, Alagappa University, Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu, India
  • P. Sindhuja Teaching Assistant, Department of Women’s Studies, Alagappa University, Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu, India
Keywords: Anthropometry, physical wellbeing, adolescent girls, nutritional status, wasting and health programmes


The need for special attention for the adolescent girls is stressed as they are the power behind breaking the barriers of poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, lack of health awareness and poor nutrition that is quite prevalent in India. Under nutrition is an important determinant of health outcomes among adolescent girls. Adolescent girls have limited access to knowledge about importance of nutrition, menstruation and its hygiene in rural India, especially in government run schools and primary health centres. To address nutritional problems and malnutrition of adolescents, it is crucial to assess their current nutritional status.Hence, this research is an attempt to understand the nutritional statusof 785 government school going adolescent girls in Dindigul district of Tamilnadu. Multistage sampling method has been used for collecting the data.The non-invasive methodof anthropometric measurements such as height, weight, MUAC (Mid-Upper Arm Circumference) and BMI (Body Mass Index) hve been used to study nutritional status of the respondents. Calculated Body Mass Index (BMI) of the respondents shows that more than two third of the female respondents wereunderweight and only less than one third of them were of normal range. The Mid-Upper Arm Circumference of the respondents projects that majority of them were severely underweight and stunting is highly prevalent in the respondents. In the study area, it was found that the nutritional status of adolescent girls is relatively low and can be addressed effectively through various health programmes.

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