Assessment of nutritional status and its determinants among children in the age group of 1-5 years in a tribal population of Coimbatore district-a cross-sectional study


Abstract BACKGROUND : Under-five children are more vulnerable to malnutrition especially in rural areas resulting in more morbidity and mortality among them. The present study is aimed to assess the prevalence of malnutrition among children of 1-5 years of age in tribal hamlets of Valparai block, Coimbatore district in Tamil Nadu. METHODS : A community-based, cross-sectional study was conducted among 95 children in the age group of 1-5 years during December-January 2020. Anthropometric measurements were taken. The indicators of nutritional status of children like stunting, underweight, and wasting were expressed using WHO growth standards. RESULTS : The overall prevalence of malnutrition in our study was 31.6%. Among the 30 (31.6%) malnourished children, 40% were underweight, and 6.67% were severely underweight. 40% were stunted, of which 13.3% were severely stunted. Wasting was present in 23.3% of malnourished children. Severe wasting was not seen. Socio-demographic factors including the type of house, maternal education, BMI of the mother, age of mother at childbirth and place of delivery had significant association with malnutrition among under-five tribal children. CONCLUSION : Malnutrition poses a serious threat to under-five children. Though many known risk factors of malnutrition have been studied, understanding the local factors linked with malnutrition is so crucial while planning information, education, and communication programs in this area. KEYWORDS : Under-five children, Stunting, Underweight, Wasting

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