Outreach Activity on Estimation of Haemoglobin Level and Assessment of Nutritional Status on Post-Graduate Female Students of Dibrugarh University

The Department of Anthropology, Dibrugarh University conducted an outreach activity on Estimation of Haemoglobin Level and Assessment of Nutritional Status on Post-Graduate female students of Dibrugarh University residing in Mamoni Raisom Goswami Chatri Nivas (MRGCN) on 24th September, 2022. A total of around 23 students aged 19 to 23 years participated voluntarily in the activity. The activity was conducted by a team consisting of research scholar volunteers, laboratory assistant, teachers of the department and support from the two staff members of the Dibrugarh University Health Centre with prior approval from the Ethical Committee for Biomedical and Health Research involving Human Participants, Dibrugarh University, Assam (ECBHR). The programme was initiated with a demonstration and awareness talk on the significance of haemoglobin level in the body, its estimation and assessments of nutritional status by the teachers of the department of Anthropology. For haemoglobin level estimation, Sahli’s method was used and nutritional status was derived by taking into account the individual height and weight of this same group of students. WHO BMI classification for Asian populations (WHO Expert Consultation, 2004) was adopted to categorise the participants into various categories of nutritional status. The study identified a considerable number of anaemic students who were found to be underweight too. However, most of the participants were found to be of normal weight and only a few were reported to be overweight.

The participants interacted and shared their feelings on the outreach activity with the Head, Department of Anthropology, Prof. Nitul Kumar Gogoi and also with the team. The team briefed the participants to add iron-rich foods and citrus fruits in their daily diets that are easily available and to increase physical activity for proper absorption of food ingested. As the females are at increased iron requirements because of regular menstrual loss, erratic eating habits being in the hostel, dislike for foods which are rich in iron, therefore, the participants were advised to avoid ready to eat and packaged foods which are extremely harmful but readily available.