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Nutritional Status of Pre-School Children from Urban Low Income Families
India is currently the home of the largest number of under-nourished and over-nourished children in the world. Data from longitudinal studies in India indicate that both under nutrition and over-nutrition in childhood is associated with higher risk of over-nutrition and noncommunicable diseases in adult life. A community based mixed longitudinal study of underfive children from urban low income families was taken up to assess their nutritional status. Weight was taken every month in all; length was measured every month in infants and height was measured once in three months in 1-5 year children. BMI was computed in all. Nutritional status was assessed using the WHO anthro software package. Between 2012 and 2015, 3888 pre-school children were enrolled (49.4% boys and 50.6% girls); mean age of these children at enrolment was 22.5±16.17 months. The mean Z scores for height for age was - 1.79; weight for age was - 1.41 and -0.47 for BMI for age. Prevalence of stunting was 43.4%; underweight was 31.9%, wasting was 12% and over-nutrition was between 3-5%. The reduction in wasting rate between 0-3 years was mainly due to the increase in prevalence of stunting. With universal screening for early detection of wasting and over-nutrition and effective management of these, it will be possible to achieve the WHA targets of reducing and maintaining wasting below 5% and preventing increase in over-nutrition in this population. This may reduce the risk of over-nutrition and non-communicable diseases in these children during their adult life.
Under-Five Children, Nutritional Status, Stunting, Underweight, Wasting, Over-Nutrition.
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