Relationship between blood pressure and body mass index in young adult population: A national-level assessment in Bangladesh

Jahidur Rahman Khan*, Raaj Kishore Biswas, Md Mazharul Islam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Young adulthood is a crucial period for major physiological transitions. Environmental changes associated with these transitions can influence health behaviour and health (e.g., poor diet, high body weight and elevated blood pressure (EBP)). Excess body weight can lead to EBP; however, little is known about this relationship among young adults in developing countries. Focusing on Bangladesh, this study assessed the association between body mass index (BMI) and BP metrics (systolic BP [SBP], diastolic BP [DBP], and BP class [optimal, normal/high normal, and elevated]). Sex-specific analyses of these relationships were performed to assess any difference across sexes. Furthermore, associations of overweight/obesity with BP metrics were investigated. Young adults aged 18-24 years (n 2181) were included from nationally representative cross-sectional Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey 2017-18. Multivariable linear and multinomial logistic regression models examined the relationships between BMI, overweight/obesity, and BP metrics. Findings reveal that higher BMI was associated with higher SBP (0.83; 95% CI 0.67, 0.99), DBP (0.66; 95% CI 0.54, 0.74), and higher odds of having EBP (adjusted odds ratio 1.24; 95% CI 1.17, 1.31). These relationships were stronger among males than females. Moreover, overweight/obese individuals had higher SBP, DBP, and higher odds of having EBP than individuals with normal BMI. Strategies to reduce body weight, improve healthy lifestyle, and awareness and monitoring of BP may help to address these serious health problems, particularly at an early age.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Journal of Nutrition
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • Association
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Young people

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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