Open Access Children aged 6 to 60 months in Nepal may require a vitamin A supplement regardless of dietary intake from plant and animal food sources

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Abstract:

The purpose of this survey was to explore the relationship between the prevalence of the health indicators of malnutrition, diarrhea, and acute respiratory infection and the consumption of vitamin A–rich food and the supplementation status of three groups of children in Nepal (supplemented, supplemented only once, and never supplemented). A trained female community health worker interviewed mothers about vitamin A–rich food feeding practices to children aged 6 to 60 months using a standardized questionnaire and then estimated the nutritional status of the children using mid-upper-arm circumference measurements and recording the incidence of diarrhea and acute respiratory infection from mothers' interviews. Regardless of the amount of vitamin A–rich foods consumed, children who were regularly supplemented with high doses of vitamin A were protected against malnutrition, diarrhea, and acute respiratory infection at a higher rate than children who were supplemented only once or were never supplemented. Regularly providing a highdose (200,000 IU) capsule of vitamin A to children aged 6 to 60 months, including those who eat vitamin A–rich foods, may be effective in decreasing the prevalence of morbidity from malnutrition, diarrhea, and acute respiratory infection.

Keywords: CAROTENOIDS; CHILD HEALTH; NEPAL; RETINOL; VITAMIN A PLANT AND ANIMAL FOOD SOURCES; VITAMIN A SUPPLEMENTATION

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2004

More about this publication?
  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106
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