alexa Nutritional Status and Risk Factors of Malnutrition among 0-24 Months Old Children Living in Mezam Division, North West Region, Cameroon

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Nutritional Status and Risk Factors of Malnutrition among 0-24 Months Old Children Living in Mezam Division, North West Region, Cameroon

Introduction: Childhood malnutrition especially under nutrition is one of the most frequent causes of child morbidity and mortality. The consequences of malnutrition are more apparent in adulthood; it results in poor physical development and diminished cognitive abilities. Objective: To evaluate the nutritional status of supposedly healthy children aged 0 to 2 years old, attending vaccination clinics in Mezam division, North West Region, Cameroon. Methods: It was a descriptive survey using structured questionnaires, which covered socioeconomic and demographic information, breastfeeding practices, socio-cultural and economic factors and anthropometric data. Anthropometric measurements were taken (weight, height, head circumference). The total number of children was 990 (561 girls and 429 boys) all from diverse ethnic groups and Backgrounds. The anthropometric indicator used was the weight-for-age. The nutritional status of these children was evaluated with respect to a number of factors which are: age range, the sex of the children, milk feeding, socio-economic and demographic factors. The results obtained were expressed in percentages. Results: Comparison of the growth patterns of the study population with that of the NCHS references revealed that none of the children grew exactly according to the NCHS references. The prevalence rate of both under nutrition and over nutrition among the 0-2 year’s old children living in Mezam division was high. Children aged 0 to 6 months were more affected by under nutrition while those aged 6-12 months were more affected by over nutrition. Risk factors of under nutrition in these infants were as a result of factors such as: Nature of parents’ profession, parents’ educational level, inappropriate child feeding practices such as exclusive breastfeeding practiced incorrectly and mixed feeding started too early. Conclusion: The study revealed a high prevalence rate of both under nutrition and over nutrition among children aged 0-2 year’s old living in the Mezam division.

Citation: Laure NJ, Christelle MM, Bilkha L, Desire MH, Julius O (2014) Nutritional Status and Risk Factors of Malnutrition among 0-24 Months Old Children Living in Mezam Division, North West Region, Cameroon. J Nutr Disorders Ther 4:150.

 
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