Dietary diversity of 6- to 59-month-old children in rural areas of Moramanga and Morondava districts, Madagascar

Abstract : BACKGROUND: A dietary imbalance or a disregard for the nutritional needs of children during early childhood can affect their growth. From the age of six months, breast milk is no longer able to meet the energy and micronutrient needs of children; the consumption of adequate complementary foods is therefore essential. Various indicators have been used to assess the quality of children's diets, and the dietary diversity score is a good indicator of children's diets. The objective of this study was to describe the dietary practices of children in rural areas of Moramanga and Morondava, Madagascar, and to identify the determinants of low dietary diversity to prioritize nutritional interventions. METHODS: We collected dietary data in 2014 on children aged 6-59 months in a study on the determinants of chronic malnutrition using the 24-hour recall method. Data on the characteristics of households and mothers were also collected. We carried out bivariate and multivariate analyses to identify the determinants of low dietary diversity scores for children. RESULTS: We included 1824 children: 893 from Moramanga and 931 from Morondava. Approximately 42.1% [95% CI: 39.0-45.4] of the children from Moramanga and 47.6% [95% CI: 44.4-50.8] of those from Morondava had a poorly diversified diet, consisting mainly of foods rich in carbohydrates and poor in meat products. Poor maternal education was associated with a high likelihood of having a non-varied diet in both study areas; the adjusted odds ratios were 2.2 [95% CI: 1.3-3.8] and 4.0 [95% CI: 2.5-6.4] for children from mothers with lower education levels for Moramanga and Morondava, respectively. For children recruited in Morondava, having low household socioeconomic status (adjusted OR: 1.8, 95% CI: 1.2-2.8) and belonging to a household without livestock was associated with a low dietary diversity score (adjusted OR: 1.8, 95% CI 1.2-2.7). CONCLUSION: Our results show the need to improve girls' education, adapt nutrition education programs for mothers based on their level of education, and strengthen poverty reduction programs.
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Nivo Rakotonirainy, Valérie Razafindratovo, Chitale Remonja, Randza Rasoloarijaona, Patrice Piola, et al.. Dietary diversity of 6- to 59-month-old children in rural areas of Moramanga and Morondava districts, Madagascar. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2018, 13 (7), pp.e0200235. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0200235⟩. ⟨pasteur-01911150⟩

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