Vol. 3, Issue 4 (2016)
Prevalence of malnutrition and dietary intake: A comparative study on tribal children (1-3 years) of Odisha
Author(s): Dr. Chandrashree Lenka
Abstract: Despite India's remarkable economic growth over the last decades, taking different steps to provide enough food to each and every individual through Public Distribution System, paying enough policy attention to health and nutrition issues of children, adolescents, pregnant and lactating mothers, malnutrition rates still remain high in India. The objectives of the study was to assess the food and nutrient intake of the tribal children belonged to 1-3 years age group and to analyze the impact of food intake on prevalence of different degrees of malnutrition. The results of the study revealed that out of the total surveyed children, 70% of the children were suffering from different degrees of malnutrition. Prevalence of malnutrition was more among girls in comparison to boys and was also statistically significant. Mean food intake of the children suffering from malnutrition was found to be less than RDA. Fruit, milk, sugar and Jaggery consumption was found to be nil in the diets of wasted and stunted children. C.R. value of mean food intake of children showed that there was no real difference in the intake of different food items of children suffering from two consecutive grades of malnutrition but significant difference in food intake was observed between normal children and moderately and severely malnourished children. The intake of nutrients was found to be decreased with the occurrence of severity of degrees of malnutrition. The most dis-advantageous situations for prevalence of malnutrition was found to be wrong perception about Govt. supplied food (81.7%), working mother (90%) no one to look after child (78.3%), belonging to lowest wealth quintile (75%), poor sanitation (65%) and alcoholic father (53.3%) etc. Thus it can be concluded that only providing health services and supplying food materials is not sufficient to combact malnutrition rather nutrition and health camps should be organized and the parents should be educated, inspired & mobilised to utilise the services provided to them at their door step.