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Nutrition transition profiles and obesity burden in Argentina

  • Natalia Tumas (a1) (a2), Constanza Rodríguez Junyent (a2), Laura Rosana Aballay (a3), Graciela Fabiana Scruzzi (a2) (a3) and Sonia Alejandra Pou (a4) (a5)...

The present study aimed to identify nutrition transition (NT) profiles in Argentina (2005–2013) and assess their association with obesity in the adult population.


A large cross-sectional study was performed considering data sets of nationally representative surveys. A multiple correspondence analysis coupled with hierarchical clustering was conducted to detect geographical clusters of association among sociodemographic and NT indicators. Multilevel logistic regression models were used to assess the effect of NT profile (proxy variable of contextual order) on obesity occurrence.


First, we used geographically aggregated data about the adult and child populations in Argentina. Second, we defined the population of adults who participated in the National Survey of Chronic Disease Risk Factors (2013) as the study population.


Twenty-four geographical units that make up the territory of Argentina and 32 365 individuals over 18 years old living in towns of at least 5000 people.


Three NT profiles were identified: ‘Socionutritional lag’ (characterized by undernutrition and socio-economically disadvantaged conditions; profile 1); ‘Double burden of malnutrition’ (undernutrition and overweight in highly urbanized scenarios; profile 2); and ‘Incipient socionutritional improvement’ (low prevalence of malnutrition and more favourable poverty indicator values; profile 3). Profiles 1 and 2 were significantly associated (OR; 95 % CI) with a higher risk of obesity occurrence in adults (1·17; 1·02, 1·32 and 1·44; 1·26, 1·64, respectively) compared with profile 3.


Argentina is facing different NT processes, where sociodemographic factors play a major role in shaping diverse NT profiles. Most of the identified profiles were linked to obesity burden in adults.

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