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Open AccessArticle

Health and Diet among People Living in an Isolated Area: Case Study of Pingelap Island in Pohnpei State, the Federated States of Micronesia

1
Department of Public Health, Graduate School of Health Science, Kobe University, Kobe 654-0142, Japan
2
Department of Health and Social Affairs, Pohnpei State Department of Health Services, Kolonia, Pohnpei FM96941, Micronesia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 7839; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17217839
Received: 19 September 2020 / Revised: 5 October 2020 / Accepted: 9 October 2020 / Published: 26 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Global Health)
Pingelap Island in Pohnpei state is geographically isolated as the nearest island is 70 km away, and such geographical isolation is a challenge for public health due to the limited access to health services. This study aims to reveal the health situation on the island and investigate the influence of geographical isolation on health and diet. For that purpose, the result was compared with those who are living in a community on the main island of Pohnpei state (Mand) with the same ethnic background. Face-to-face interviews were conducted to collect data on demographics, diet, and behavior. Anthropometry and blood pressure measurements were also taken. A total of 98 (Pingelap = 50; Mand = 48) subjects participated in the study. The result showed that females, in particular, had a high prevalence of obesity (80.0% in Pingelap; 75.9% in Mand). However, no significant regional difference was found in both BMI and blood pressure, regardless of gender. Regarding diet, although the geographical location impacted food availability, the consumption of major imported foods did not show a significant regional difference. In conclusion, the geographical isolation did not significantly influence health and diet, but the majority of the study population displayed a high-risk burden of non-communicable diseases. View Full-Text
Keywords: BMI; blood pressure; Pacific Island; diet; modernized BMI; blood pressure; Pacific Island; diet; modernized
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Sakai, M.; Nakazawa, M.; Abraham, D. Health and Diet among People Living in an Isolated Area: Case Study of Pingelap Island in Pohnpei State, the Federated States of Micronesia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 7839.

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