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Nutrients. 2018 Mar 20;10(3). pii: E382. doi: 10.3390/nu10030382.

Influence of Feeding Practices on Malnutrition in Haitian Infants and Young Children.

Author information

1
Division of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 8330023, Chile. belen.irarrazaval@gmail.com.
2
Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition, Division of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Hospital Josefina Martínez, Santiago 8330023, Chile. sbarja@uc.cl.
3
Department of Health Sciences (Nutrition and Dietetics), School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Hospital Josefina Martínez, Santiago 8330023, Chile. edsonbustos@gmail.com.
4
Klinik Saint Espri Health Center, Port Au Prince, HT 6311, Haiti. romeldorsaint@yahoo.fr.
5
Klinik Saint Espri Health Center, Port Au Prince, HT 6311, Haiti. gloriaasenethmm@yahoo.es.
6
Fundación América Solidaria, Santiago 7500776, Chile. mariapazguzman@gmail.com.
7
Division of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago 8330023, Chile. ruauy@med.puc.cl.

Abstract

Infant malnutrition remains an important cause of death and disability, and Haiti has the highest prevalence in the Americas. Therefore, preventive strategies are needed. Our aims were (1) To assess the prevalence of malnutrition among young children seen at a health center in Haiti; (2) Examine adherence to infant feeding practices recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the association to nutritional status. This cross-sectional study recruited children from the Saint Espri Health Center in Port Au Prince in 2014. We recorded feeding practices, socio-demographic data, and anthropometric measurements (WHO-2006). We evaluated 278 infants and children younger than two years old, aged 8.08 ± 6.5 months, 53.2% female. 18.35% were underweight (weight/age <-2 SD); 13.31% stunted (length/age <-2 SD), and 13.67% had moderate or severe wasting (weight/length <-2 SD). Malnutrition was associated with male gender, older age, lower maternal education level, and greater numbers of siblings (Chi², p < 0.05). Adherence to recommended breastfeeding practices was 11.8-97.9%, and to complementary feeding practices was 9.7-90.3%. Adherence was associated with a lower prevalence of malnutrition.

CONCLUSION:

Prevalence of infant and young child malnutrition in this population is high. Adherence to WHO-recommended feeding practices was associated with a better nutritional status.

KEYWORDS:

breastfeeding; feeding practices; infant feeding; malnutrition; nutrition; pediatrics; primary health care

PMID:
29558413
PMCID:
PMC5872800
DOI:
10.3390/nu10030382
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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