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The objective was to examine the association between symptoms of maternal mental health problems and child diet and nutritional status in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Maternal depression and anxiety symptoms were measured by the Hopkins Symptom Checklist-25 (HSCL-25), and post-traumatic stress was measured by the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire (HTQ). Participants were classified as having high psychological distress if their mean item score was in the upper quartile of both measures. Dependent variables included child dietary diversity, meal frequency, height-for-age z score (HAZ), weight-for-age z score (WAZ), weight-for-height z score (WHZ), stunting and underweight. Bivariate and multivariate regression analyses were conducted.
The study was nested in a larger quasi-experimental study evaluating Jenga Jamaa II, a food and nutrition assistance project in Uvira and Fizi territories.
In total, 812 mother–child pairs participated. Children ranged from 2·6 to 5·6 years of age.
HSCL-25 (ß: 0·18, P < 0·05) and HTQ (ß: 0·19, P < 0·05) were statistically significantly associated with higher dietary diversity scores, and all maternal mental health measures were associated with higher meal frequency (HSCL-25: ß: 0·13, P = 0·001; HTQ: ß: 0·12, P = 0·001; high distress: ß: 0·15, P < 0·05) and consumption of at least three meals/snacks per day (HSCL-25: OR: 2·06, HTQ: OR: 1·93, high distress: OR: 2·68, P < 0·001 for all). No significant associations were found with HAZ, WAZ, WHZ, stunting or underweight indicators.
More severe symptoms of maternal mental health problems were positively associated with child diet, but not anthropometry indicators. More research is needed to understand the role of maternal mental health in child feeding practices in food insecure and resource-poor settings.
To delineate trends in types of protein in US adults from 1999 to 2010, we examined the mean intake of beef, pork, lamb or goat, chicken, turkey, fish, dairy, eggs, legumes, and nuts and seeds (grams per kilogram of body weight) among adults and according to subgroups, including chronic disease status.
Six cycles of the repeated cross-sectional surveys.
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 1999 to 2010.
US adults aged ≥20 years (n 29 145, range: 4252–5762 per cycle).
Overall, mean chicken (0·47 to 0·52 g/kg), turkey (0·09 to 0·13 g/kg), fish (0·21 to 0·27 g/kg) and legume (0·21 to 0·26 g/kg) intake increased, whereas dairy decreased (3·56 to 3·22 g/kg) in US adults (P <0·03). Beef, lamb or goat intake did not change in adults or among those with a chronic disease. Over time, beef intake declined less, and lamb or goat intake increased more, for those of lower socio-economic status compared with those of higher socio-economic status.
Despite recommendations to reduce red meat, beef, lamb or goat intake did not change in adults, among those with a chronic disease or with lower socio-economic status.
In resource-constrained facilities or during resuscitation, immediate paediatric weight estimation remains a fundamental challenge. We aimed to develop and validate weight estimation models based on ulna length and forearm width and circumference measured by simple and portable tools; and to compare them against previous methods (advanced paediatric life support (APLS), Theron and Traub–Johnson formulas).
Cross-sectional analysis of anthropometric measurements. Four ulna- and forearm-based weight estimation models were developed in the training set (n 1016). Assessment of bias, precision and accuracy was examined in the validation set (n 457).
National Children’s Study-Formative Research in Anthropometry (2011–2012).
Multi-racial/ethnic infants and children aged <6 years (n 1473).
Developed Models 1–4 had high predictive precision (R2=0·91–0·97). Mean percentage errors between predicted and measured weight were significantly smaller across the developed models (0·1–0·7 %) v. the APLS, Theron and Traub–Johnson formulas (−1·7, 9·2 and −4·9 %, respectively). Root-mean-squared percentage error was overall smaller among Models 1–4 v. the three existing methods (range=7·5–8·7 v. 9·8–13·3 %). Further, Models 1–4 were within 10 and 20 % of actual weight in 72–87 and 95–99 % of the weight estimations, respectively, which outperformed any of the three existing methods.
Ulna length, forearm width and forearm circumference by simple and portable tools could serve as valid and reliable surrogate measures of weight among infants and children aged <6 years with improved precision over the existing age- or length-based methods. Further validation of these models in physically impaired or non-ambulatory children is warranted.
To provide a better understanding of dietary intakes of pregnant women in low- and middle-income countries.
Systematic review was performed to identify relevant studies which reported nutrient intakes or food consumption of pregnant women in developing countries. Macronutrient and micronutrient intakes were compared by region and the FAO/WHO Estimated Average Requirements. Food consumption was summarized by region.
Developing countries in Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean and Central/South America.
Pregnant women in the second or third trimester of their pregnancies.
From a total of 1499 retrieved articles, sixty-two relevant studies were analysed. The ranges of mean/median intakes of energy, fat, protein and carbohydrate were relatively higher in women residing in the Caribbean and Central/South America than in Africa and Asia. Percentages of energy from carbohydrate and fat varied inversely across studies in all regions, whereas percentage of energy from protein was relatively stable. Among selected micronutrients, folate and Fe intakes were most frequently below the Estimated Average Requirements, followed by Ca and Zn. Usual dietary patterns were heavily cereal based across regions.
Imbalanced macronutrients, inadequate micronutrient intakes and predominantly plant-based diets were common features of the diet of pregnant women in developing countries. Cohesive public health efforts involving improving access to nutrient-rich local foods, micronutrient supplementation and fortification are needed to improve the nutrition of pregnant women in developing countries.
Inappropriate complementary feeding is one of the major causes of malnutrition in young children in developing countries. We developed an educational intervention, delivered by local health-care providers, aimed at improving complementary feeding practices and child nutrition.
Eight townships in Laishui, a rural area in China, were randomly assigned to the educational intervention or control group. A total of 599 healthy infants were enrolled at age 2–4 months and followed up until 1 year of age. In the intervention group, educational messages and enhanced home-prepared recipes were disseminated to caregivers through group trainings and home visits. Questionnaire surveys and anthropometric measurements were taken at baseline and ages 6, 9 and 12 months. Analysis was by intention to treat.
It was found that food diversity, meal frequency and hygiene practices were improved in the intervention group. Infants in the intervention group gained 0·22 kg more weight (95 % CI 0·003, 0·45 kg, P = 0·047) and gained 0·66 cm more length (95 % CI 0·03, 1·29 cm, P = 0·04) than did controls over the study period.
Findings from the study suggest that an educational intervention delivered through local health-care providers can lead to substantial behavioural changes of caregivers and improve infant growth.
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