Original Research Article
Year: 2019 | Month: January-March | Volume: 4 | Issue: 1 | Pages: 12-19
Influence of Women’s Status in Their Family on Their Health and Nutritional Status- Considering Employment as a Rider
Anees Fathima Thabassum Z1, Khyrunnisa Begum2
1Faculty, Department of Studies in Food Science and Nutrition, University of Mysore, Mysore.
2Professor (RTD), Department of Studies in Food Science and Nutrition, University of Mysore, Mysore.
Corresponding Author: Anees Fathima Thabassum Z
Background: Indian societies are principally male dominated, who have greater control over family decisions, and this causes subordination of women and their roles and status in the family and society. This restrains women in decision making in every sphere of life including those related to their health and mental well-being.
Objective: This study aims to explore association between women’s status in the family and its influence on their overall health and nutrition.
Methodology: Educated women, 400 employed (EW) and 272 unemployed women (UEW); aged 25 to 40 years participated. Self-reporting standardized questionnaires were used to elicit information regarding their Degree of involvement in decision making and preference given in family to evaluate their status. Information on General health distress (GHD), Menstrual and Mental health, General health quality (GHQ) were also obtained. Height and weight were measured.
Results: Significantly higher percentage (33%) of EW were involved in complete decision making (P<0.0001) and enjoyed good family status (P=0.036). Majority of women irrespective of employment and family status experienced mild GHD. EW with poor family status experienced significantly higher GHD (P=0.021). Severity of Pre-menstrual symptoms (PMS) significantly increased with decrease in family status (EW and UEW, p=0.0148 and p=0.0050).
Family status also influenced mental health, significant differences were noted among EW (Depression-P=0.0007, Anxiety-P=0.0408, Stress-P<0.0001) and UEW (Depression- P<0.0001, Anxiety P=0.0018, Stress P=0.0308).Among EW family status exhibited significant association with GHQ, GHD, depression, Anxiety and stress. However among UEW significant association of family status with GHD, PMS, depression, Anxiety, and Stress was evident.
Conclusion: It is obvious that employment acts as a catalyst in enhancing women’s status in the family, it can be considered as a prime factor determining their health status; overall wellbeing, unemployment and poor status in the family may have serious effect on the general and mental health of women.
Keywords: Women’ status, Family status Employment, Decision making, General health distress, Mental health.