Risk and protective factors for chronic diseases in adults: a population-based study

Abstract The article describes the relative frequency ok of risk and protective behaviors for chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in adults residing in Viçosa, Brazil. A cross-section-al population-based study including 1,226 adults living in the municipality. We used a structured questionnaire containing questions sociodemographic and behavioral The risk and protection factors evaluated were: smoking, physical activity, excessive consumption of alcohol and food consumption. The proportion of risk and protection factors was calculated in the total population, according to gender, education and socioeconomic status. The studied population has a high frequency of risk factors for NCDs, such as excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, habit of consuming whole milk, habit of eating meat with visible fat, regular consumption of soft drinks and 78.5% did not achieve the minimum recommendation for physical activity in leisure time. With regard to protective factors, 86.2% of the population reported regular consumption of fruits and vegetables, and 73%, of beans. It was found the highest frequency of risk factors in among males, in younger people and middle socioeconomic status. This population has an urgent need for public policy of municipal planning to change this current scenario.