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Food Nutr Bull. 2004 Sep;25(3):239-47.

Ecuadorian Andean women's nutrition varies with age and socioeconomic status.

Author information

1
Multilateral Programmes Branch, Canadian International Development Agency, Gatineau, Quebec, Canada. barb_macdonald@acdi-cida.gc.ca

Abstract

An agricultural project in Highland Ecuador provided a model context to better understand the nutrition of rural women. The adequacy of women's nutrition and the strength of associations with age and socioeconomic status were studied in 104 rural households over four rounds (two seasons) during the 1995-1996 agricultural year using a cross-sectional with repeated-measures design. Women were at high risk for micronutrient deficiencies (calcium, iron, riboflavin, and vitamin B12) due to low intakes of animal products. Two distinct constructs representing socioeconomic status were identified: modern lifestyle and farming wealth. In multivariate models, farming wealth was associated with quality of women's diet (animal protein adjusted for energy, p = 0.01). Diet quality, in turn, was positively associated with anthropometric status (p = 0.02). Women over the age of 50 weighed approximately 3.7 kg less than younger women and consumed less energy (300 kcal) and micronutrients (p < 0.05). Age was positively associated with respiratory morbidity (p = 0.01). These findings, while directly relevant to a specific context, suggest the need for cross-cultural studies to identify the extent of, and factors contributing to, the risk of nutritional inadequacy in postreproductive women in developing countries.

PMID:
15460267
DOI:
10.1177/156482650402500303
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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