FOOD CONSUMPTION PATTERN, ANTHROPOMETRIC INDICES AND MICRONUTRIENT STATUS OF CHILDREN AGED

FOOD CONSUMPTION PATTERN, ANTHROPOMETRIC INDICES AND MICRONUTRIENT STATUS OF CHILDREN AGED

ABSTRACT

The study was undertaken to assess food consumption pattern, anthropometric and micronutrient status of children aged 6-59 months in Kaduna state. A cross sectional survey design was used. A multi stage sampling technique was used to select the subjects for the study. In the first stage, two Local Government Areas were selected from each of the three senatorial districts using simple random sampling procedure. This gave a total of 6 Local Government Areas. In the second stage, purposive sampling was used in selecting two communities from each of the local governmentareas (a total of 12 communities). At the third stage, the subjects (420) aged 6 – 59 months were randomly selected for the study using proportionate sampling technique while 20% sub- sample was selected for biochemical analysis. Anthropometric information was determined using age, height and weight of the children. Haemoglobin (Hb) was used to determine anemia, serum retinol was used to determine vitamin A status and also iodine was determined using urinary iodine excretion level (UIE). Anemia was defined as Hb < 11.0mg/dl, Vitamin A deficiency was defined was defined as reading ≤ 10g/dl and marginal deficiency <20g/dl. Urinary iodine excretion (UIE) is defined as a reading <10mcg/dl. Socio-economic information and feeding practices were determined using questionnaire. The questionnaire was pretested and reliability index of 0.9 was obtained using Cronbach alpha. Dietary intake was determined using a combination of food frequency questionnaire and 24hour food recall. In determining the major staples in the area of study, the result showed that maize was the most frequent staple and rice (cereals) the least consumed in Kaduna State. Anthropometric results of the children showed high prevalence of different categories of malnutrition, 76.4% were too thin for their age (underweight), 70% were too short for their age (stunted) while (47.6)% were too thin for their height (wasted).Biochemical results , revealed high prevalence of anaemia (53.6%) urinary iodine execration (29.2%) and vitamin A as low as( 3.6%) of the children were deficient. Correlation between anthropometric, biochemical status and socioeconomic information revealed height-for-age of the children and their weight-for-age was highly significant (r = 0.666; P<0.001). The following variables also showed significant relationship: Iodine status with height – for – age was significant (r =0.353; P <
0.05 . There was a significant (r = 0.664; P < 0.01) relationship between weight – for- height and weight- for –age. Iodine and weight- for- age was significant ( r =0.308; P < 0.005). Hemoglobin correlated with iodine (r = 0.226; P < 0.05). There was a significant(r =0.333; P < 0.02) relationship between Vitamin A and iodine. Vitamin A and hemoglobin was highly significant (r = 0.460; P < 0.01).Family income and weight- for -age was significant(r = 0.247; P< 0.05). There were more correlated values that were significant, fathers occupation with family income( r = 0.252; P<0.005), mother’s occupation with family income( r = 0.262; P < 0.005), fathers education with family income ( r = 0.340;P<0.005) and mothers occupation with fathers occupation (r =0.397;P<0.001).Equally fathers occupation and mothers education was significant(r=0.371;P< 0.005) and fathers education with mothers education (r =0.230;P< 0.005).These results were as a result of faulty feeding practices especially over-dependence on a particular crop(monotonous diets fed to the children) and low socio-economic status of the parents. The study established that there is malnutrition in under five children in Kaduna