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J Nutr. 2008 Sep;138(9):1705-11.

HIV infection is associated with decreased dietary diversity in South African children.

Author information

  • 1Pharmaceutical Product Development, CB2168Q Cambridge, UK.

Abstract

Little is known about dietary diversity of children residing in areas of high HIV prevalence. This study examined dietary diversity in 381 children ages 6-24 mo in rural South Africa. Twenty-eight (7.3%) children and 170 mothers (44.6%) were HIV infected. Home visits were conducted weekly and a detailed history of dietary intake obtained. A dietary diversity score was computed based on the weekly consumption of 8 food classes. Low dietary diversity was defined as falling within the lowest quartile of the diversity scale. There were 22,772 child weeks of observation: 1369 for HIV-infected children, 8876 for HIV-uninfected children born to HIV-infected mothers, and 12,527 for HIV-uninfected children born to HIV-uninfected mothers. Low dietary diversity was more common in HIV-infected children [crude odds ratio (OR), 2.59; 95% CI, 1.52 to 4.41) compared with children born to HIV-uninfected mothers. In a multiple logistic regression analysis adjusting for socioeconomic and health status, HIV-infected children had lower dietary diversity (conditional OR, 1.76; 95% CI, 1.06 to 2.94) than HIV-uninfected children. HIV-infected children consumed less in 6 of 8 food classes compared with HIV-uninfected children, with the 2 exceptions being breast milk and formula milk. In rural South Africa, HIV-infected children's diets are significantly less diverse than those of HIV-uninfected children. This may be a factor contributing to increased morbidity and poorer survival in these children.

PMID:
18716173
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2587082
Free PMC Article

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