Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Sport Rehabilitation, School of Physical Education and Sport Science, Hashemite University, Zarqa

2 Department of Kinesiology, School of Physical Education, Sport and Exercise Science, Ball State University, Muncie, USA

3 Department of Orthopedics, Royal Medical Services Hospital, Amman, Jordan

4 Department of Kinesiology, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, USA


Background: The health status of medical practitioners can potentially impact their ability
to counsel patients. The purpose of the study was to examine the prevalence of obesity and
behaviors associated with the development of metabolic disease among medical practitioners
in the country of Jordan. Materials and Methods: The participants were 748 (male n = 285,
32.3 years ± 7.3, female n = 463, 29.7 years ± 5.7) randomly selected pharmacists, nurses,
physicians, medical lab technicians, and radiation specialists from a variety of medical
institutions in Jordan. A short 25‑item validated instrument was chosen for this investigation.
After the survey was administered and data were tabulated, one‑way analysis of variance
and Pearson’s Chi‑square analysis were conducted to examine differences in reported risk
behaviors (low physical activity [PA], smoking) and obesity by gender, age and medical
specialty. Results: Descriptive analysis revealed that 20.9% of the participants self‑reported as
smokers of cigarettes, 47.9% were either overweight or obese, and 52.9% reported no days of
planned PA on average per week. The results suggested a difference in body mass index (BMI)
classification (F = 17.9, P ≤ 0.001) and smoking (F = 5.33, P = 0.021) by age. Mean age
associated with being underweight was 26.4 years for normal weight 29.3 years for overweight
31.6 years and finally for obese was 34.5 years. Chi‑square test resulted in differences by
gender(2 > 50, P ≤ 0.001)forBMI (males: 26.4 ± 3.7; females: 24.6 ± 3.7),PA (males no planned
PA 61.1%, females 47.9%) and smoking (males 43.1% smokers, females 7.1%). Researchers
discovered that medical specialty was related to differences in reported smoking (2 = 26.5,
P ≤ 0.001) and days of planned PA (2 = 24.2, P = 0.019). Conclusions: Within the population
of medical practitioners there is still a high incidence of obesity and risk behaviors associated
with metabolic diseases. It also appears that
these incidence rates are greater among
men, with increasing age, and among certain
medical specialties.


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