Open Journal of Statistics, 2012, 2, 219-223 Published Online April 2012 ( 219
Study of the Effect of Food Habit, Lifestyle and Daily Trip
on Physical and Mental Status of Subjects at Islamic
University in Kushtia, Bangladesh*
Shahedur Rahman1, Anowar Khasru Parvez2#, Abdus Sabur3, Shahj ah an A li 3
1Department of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Jessore Science and Technology University, Jessore, Bangladesh
2Department of Microbiology, Jahangirnagar University, Dhaka, Bangladesh
3Department of Accounting and Inform ation S ystems, Islamic University, Kushtia, Bangladesh
Received November 20, 2011; revised December 25, 2011; accepted January 10, 2012
This is a qualitative (study that used framework analysis) to examine by interviews among University personnel who
live inside and o utside the Islamic University campus in Kushtia, Ban gladesh. In the present study, we found that sub-
jects who live inside of the University feel better physically and mentally than the nonresident subjects. It was found
that residents are more fit and feel better during and after class time. Resident subjects have less stress and maintain
balanced diet for which they have good average BMI value than the nonresident subjects. In addition nonresident sub-
jects have suffered diseases comparatively much more than resident subjects.
Keywords: Food Habit; Life Style; Daily Trip; Physical Health; Mental Health; Health Risk
1. Introduction
A person’s life style, mental health and physical health
are closely related. They often affect one another. Recent
research on psycho physiology revealed that some mental
health problems/mental stress conditions can cause phy-
sical ailments. Lifestyle factors, mental and physical
stress, food habit etc can also influence the onset and
progression of various diseases like cancer, cardiovascu-
lar disease, diabetes mellitus (type 1 & type 2), [1] infec-
tious disease [2], myocardial ischaemia [3], cell aging [4],
inherited long QT syndrome, coronary heart disease [4],
mutation in DNA sequence, immune system disorders
and other problems. Some time the use of psychological
techniques can even reduce the risk of these most major
diseases [4].
Increasing evidence suggests that diet and lifestyle in
childhood and adolescence also have a potential lifelong
effect on risks for many chronic diseases. The risk for
diabetes was almost 2-fold higher in subjects aged > 40
compared with the age group 20 - 30, systolic BP > 140
mm Hg, and waist hip ratio (WHR) for men. Significant
association of BMI and type 2 diabetes was also ob-
served for females. BMI > 30 showed to be exceedingly
risky state for the occurrence of diabetes [5,6].
Since there have been very few studies on this issue in
Asian countries, the present questionnaire survey was
elucidated to investigate the relationship between food
habit, various stressful life events and disease onset and
prognosis in a community of a public University of
Bangladesh. Islamic University, Kushtia is situated on
the boundary between two districts Kushtia and Jhenai-
dah. It is 24.5 km away from Kushtia town, 23.5 km
away from Jhenaidah town and 15 km away from
Shailkupa. Every day students, teachers, and staffs are
transported from these three towns who reside there, to
the University campus. And after that time they are
transported back to their resident by the University bus.
This daily trip can cause mental and physical stress to a
person. There are six halls for students (four for males
and two for females) in university campus. Their capac-
ity is approximately 2200. There are 7 quarters for teach-
ers and staff, a dorm for teacher in University campus.
The teacher, staff and student who stay in campus gener-
ally do not need to travel daily to Kushtia, Jhenaidah or
Shailkupa. There, it is reasonable to assume they do not
have same kind of stress than others. There is a small
group of student and staff who neither live inside Uni-
versity campus nor Kushtia, Jhenaidah or Shailkupa.
They live within 1 km of area from campus and they
have different mode of transportation. In the present
study, we aimed to find the effect of food habit, lifestyle
*The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
#Corresponding author.
opyright © 2012 SciRes. OJS
and daily trip on physical and mental status among the
subjects who live inside the campus and outside the
2. Methods
2.1. Study Subjects
This is a qualitative study that used framework analysis
to examine interviews among University personnel in-
cluding teacher, student, and staff. The study comprised
208 subjects (184 students, 17 staffs, 7 teachers). Among
them 112 were male and 96 were female. The subjects
were randomly chosen. All participants were interviewed
by using standard questionnaires that evaluated lifestyle
habits, food habits, trip habit, clinical and biological
characteristics, etc. In this work, we included 160 smok-
ers and 45 nonsmokers. To join th e study, the participant
had to sign a written informed consent (there they all
agree about publishing the study result). Because the
study simulates the usual practice in University in Bang-
ladesh, an ethical approval was not necessary.
2.2. Statistical Analysis
The number of enrolled participants was found to be
adequate to evaluate two-sided standardized differences
between the subgroups of the study. Dietary assessment/
food intake variables, socio-demographic and lifestyle
variables, anthropometric, clinical and biochemical char-
acteristics (BMI), physical activity variables, trip vari-
ables and stamina variables are presented in absolute and
relative frequencies. Associations between categorical
variables were evaluated by means Pearson’s correlation
test, while differences between categorical and several
biochemical, clinical and nutritional variables were eva-
luated, i.e. standardized residuals against fitted values.
All reported p-values are based on two-sided tests and
compared to a significance level of 0.05 and 0.01. SPSS
10 (SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) software was used for
all the statistical calculations .
3. Results
From Table 1, it is evident that nonresident subjects do
more physical exercise then resident person. It is ob-
served that the resident subjects have higher percentage
of normal BMI than nonresident person. On the other
hand, nonresident people are either more over weight or
underweight than resident subjects. There is a significant
correlation between nonresident and resident personnel’s
BMI (0.230 at 0.05 level). So the correlation proves that
there is good relationship between residence and BMI.
It is clear that nonresident subjects suffer from differ-
ent diseases than resident subjects. They also suffered
higher rates of hereditary disease, skin disease, blood
Table 1. Comparison between various stress variable be-
tween nonresident and resident subjects.
Parameters NonresidentResident
No exercise 29.36% 36.58%
Walk 40.5% 39%
Game 17.46% 14.63%
Others 5.6% 6.1%
Walk & game 4.8% 2.4%
Physical exercise
Walk & other 2.4% 1.2%
Unknown 1.6% 1.2%
Under weight 15.1% 8.5%
Normal 68.3% 85.4%
Over weight 15.1% 4.9%
Hereditary 3.2% -
Environmental 4.8% 1.22%
Skin 8% 6.1%
Blood related 0.8% -
Food born 0.8% 2.44%
Water born 0.8% 3.7%
Mix 4% 1.2%
Others 8.7% 9.8%
No disease 69% 75.6%
Meat 43.9% 38.9%
Red meat 19.5% 20.6%
White meat 4.9% 8.7%
Fish 19.5% 24.6.55%
Vegetables 41.5% 31%
Fruits 25.6% 26.2%
Food habit
Mix 29.3% 39.7%
1 (hour) 2.4% 4.8%
2 (hours) 19.5% 21.4%
3 (hours) 19.5% 18.3%
4 (hours) 25.66% 20.6%
5 (hours) 7.32% 7.1%
6 (hours) 8.5% 11.9%
Study time
6< (hours) 12.2% 3.19%
Yes 55.55% 59.75%
Balance diet
No 44.44% 40.24%
Sleep before 12 a.m. 37.30% 29.26%
Sleep after 12 a.m . 62.69% 70.73%
Wak e u p b ef o r e 7 a.m. 73. 01% 57.31%
Sleeping habit
Wake up after 7 a.m. 25.39% 41.46%
related disease and other disease. Though resident sub-
jects have higher rate of food born and waterborne dis-
eases. Table 1 show that there is no significant differ-
Copyright © 2012 SciRes. OJS
Copyright © 2012 SciRes. OJS
lowest of 1.022 to the highest of 1.065. It is obser ved th at
65 percent stress determined by the other variables,
which are not considered in our analysis.
ence in food habit between resident and nonresident sub-
jects with respect to meat and fish consumption. But in
case of mix food resident subjects like it more than the
nonresident subjects. On the other hand, higher percent-
age of resident person studies more than six hours. This
data shows that more resident subjects maintain balanced
diet then than the nonresident subjects.
4. Discussion
Many studies show that poor physical health outcomes
Table 1 illustrates the sleeping habit pattern of resi-
dent and nonresident subjects. The data shows higher
percentages of nonresident person go to bed early than
resident person. The data shows that higher percentage of
nonresident persons wake up early in the morning then
the resident person. There is significant correlation pre-
sent between residence and wake up time at 0.05 levels
(–0.164). Significant correlation also present between
residence and bed time. It is found that there is good re-
lationship between residence and wake up time (–0.164
at 0.05 level), residence and bed time (0.238 at 0.01 level)
(Table 2).
Table 2. Correlations between sleeping time and residence.
Residence Wakeup
time Bed
Residence Pearson Correlation 1.000 –0.164(*) –0.083
Sig. (2-tailed) 0.0 0.018 0.234
N 208 208 208
Wakeup timePearson Correlation –0.164(*) 1.000 0.238(**)
Sig. (2-tailed) 0.018 0.0 0.001
N 208 208 208
Bed time Pearson Correlation –0.083 0.238(**) 1.000
Sig. (2-tailed) 0.234 0.001 0.0
N 208 208 208
Figure 1 shows the relationship between resident and
nonresident subject’s mental and physical feelings just
after coming to campus and in classroom. Resident per-
son physically and mentally feel better than the nonresi-
dent person during and after class hour. It is found that
there is good relationship between residence and physical
feelings (0.145 at 0.05 level), residence and mental feel-
ings (0.298 at 0.01 level).
*Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed); **Correlation is sig-
nificant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
Table 3. Regression analysis (variables in the equation).
Variables BetaSE Beta t Sig. ToleranceVIF
Balanced Diet
Table 3 indicates that selected independent variables
explain 35 percent variations in stress. All the independ-
ent variables are significant at 0 percent level of signifi-
cance. The highest contributions for reducing stress are
exercise, income and balanced diet as per primary data. It
is to be noted that there is no multicollinearity among the
independent variables since the range of VIF are from the isease
Figure 1. Mental and physical feelings just after coming to campus and in classroom.
result from higher level of stress including blood pres-
sure, hypertension [7,8], self-reported illness [9], im-
mune function, diabetes, hyperglycemia [10], heart dis-
ease [11], dyslipidemia [12], preterm birth [13] and in-
creased carotid artery intima-media thickness [14]. In
addition, health damaging behaviours such as drug mis-
use [15] and cigarette smoking [16] have also been found
to bear strong correlation with stress.
Poor mental health is also related to stress it include
psychological distress [17], depression [18], reduced psy-
chological well-being [19] and psychological functioning
[20], poor mental health [21], increased anxiety [22],
suicidal ideation [15] and reduced self-esteem.
Several of the studies specifically considered the effect
of stress on the management of chronic diseases includ-
ing hypertension [23], HIV/ A IDS [24], sickle cell disease
[25], mental illness [26], substance misuse problems [22]
and myocardial infarction [11]. Elevated stress hormones
contribute to the development of metabolic syndrome
that in turn may be a risk factor for coronary heart dis-
ease and depression.
This study is a cross-sectional study that cannot pro-
vide causal relationships but can only be suggestive of
future research. The evaluation was ascertained through a
questionnaire. We cannot exclude the possibility of un-
der-reporting or over-reporting, although subjects com-
pleted the questionnaires with the help and supervision of
well-trained staff. Further evaluation could increase the
accuracy of our findings. Also, because of a high degree
of statistical co-linearity, ability to d istinguish the effects
of our subjects was limited. In addition, a limited varia-
tion in intakes of meat, fish, milk, etc. in our subjects
could lead to insufficient statistical power to detect sig-
nificant associations.
From this study it observed that the person who lives
within the campus goes to bed late and at the same time
they wake up late at the morning then their nonresident
counterparts. Because of this resident subjects can spend
more time to study at night. The data also shows that
resident subjects spent less time doing physical exercise
than the nonresident personnel. This data proves that the
resident person spent more time for study.
Data also shows that there is not much difference in
food habit between resident and nonresident subjects in
case of meat and fish (protein). But in case of mixed food
more resident subjects like it than the nonresidents be-
cause resident subjects experience monotony. And more
resident subjects maintain balanced diet than the non-
resident subjects. The comparison of BMI among resi-
dent and nonresident subjects also suggests the above
information. BMI comparison shows that more resident
person have their BMI range at normal level than the
nonresident person, and the percentage of BMI range of
nonresident person is higher in case of underweight and
The data also suggest that after traveling from Kushtia,
Jhenaidah and Shailkupa higher percentage of nonresi-
dent subjects feel “tired” and “not well” both physically
and mentally just after reaching University and during
and after class. On the other hand, resident do not have to
travel and much lower percentage of them feel “tired”
and “not well” both physically and mentally. The data
suggests that nonresident person have to bear more stress
than the r esident person. We also foun d in our study that
the occurrence of disease is less frequent in resident per-
son than the nonresident person. However, the preva-
lence of food and waterborne disease is grater among
resident subjects than the nonresident subjects due to
unhygienic conditions in hall dinning. Food cost of vari-
ous income levels also varies. Students spent less money
for their food compared to higher income level teachers
and staffs.
It is concluded that nonresident person face more
stress then the resident person. To deal with this stress
maintain balanced diet, more physical exercise, hygienic
practice may be helpful. On the other hand the University
could be transformed to a fully residential university,
because University is spending $1000 - $2000 every day
for transporting students, teachers and staffs, but higher
numbers of these nonr esident subjects are under physical
and mental stress due to the need to travel.
5. Consent
The study was performed with informed consent and
following all the guidelines for experimental investiga-
tions required by the Institutional Research and Ethics
6. Acknowledgements
We thank Department of Biotechnology & Genetic En-
gineering, Islamic University and the respondents who
took part in the stud y.
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