Mothers’ Perception Analysis on Nutritional Health and Malnutrition among Children under 5 Years in the Niger Delta Region
Asian Journal of Research and Reports in Gastroenterology,
Introduction: Malnutrition may involve inadequate calories, protein, carbohydrates, vitamins or minerals in the body. It could be under nutrition or undernourishment, where there no enough nutrients in the body from diet or over nutrition when there is hyper concentration of required calories in the system. Malnutrition often is used to specifically refer to under nutrition where an individual is not getting enough calories, protein or micronutrients. Several factors including dietary intake issues, diseases, food insecurity, inadequate maternal and child health care, sanitation services, illiteracy and poverty may also influence the food intake of people.
Objective: The purpose of the study was to examine mothers understanding and causes of protein energy malnutritionin children under 5 years of age.
Methods: A descriptive research design was used to analyze the causes and effects of malnutrition among mothers that has children of 0-5 years of age in Amassoma District, Bayelsa state. A well-structured and validated questionnaire was used to collect participants’ data.
Results: Data revealed that majority of the mothers (99.3%) were aware of malnutrition and believed ignorance/ illiteracy as a major predisposing factor to malnutrition. 85% (number of children by parents), 100% (poverty), 79.4% (food taboos), 92.7% (presence of chronic illness and improper breast feeding respectively), socio-economic status defined by education,96.6% (stated that parents occupation affects children’s nutritional health), ,88.7% (educational level of mothers has a relationship with children nutritional status) and that, children of 0-10 months (33.3%) are more often predisposed to malnutrition.
Conclusion: Data showed no significant association between demographics and awareness level of malnutrition with P > 0.05.Mothers should therefore, be educated on the importance of exclusively breast feeding their babies especially from 0-6 months and the predisposing factors to malnutrition among children of 0-5 years of age, this would prevent the prevalence of malnutrition in developing nations.
- protein-energy malnutrition
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