Impact of education and provision of complementary feeding on growth and morbidity in children less than 2 years of age in developing countries

Added March 9, 2018

Citation: Lassi Z.S., Das J.K., Zahid G. et al. Impact of education and provision of complementary feeding on growth and morbidity in children less than 2 years of age in developing countries: a systematic review. BMC Public Health, 2013;13(Suppl 3):1-10

Complementary feeding interventions have a potential to improve the nutritional status of in developing countries. However, large scale high quality randomized controlled trials are required to assess the actual impact of this intervention on growth children and morbidity in children 6-24 months of age. Education should be combined with provision of complementary foods that are affordable, particularly for children in food insecure countries.

The period between six and twenty-four months is the most critical time for growth for infants. Undernutrition can lead to adverse effects on this period of growth and in some cases, may result in death. Sixteen studies were included in this review with their quality assessed. This review aimed to assess the effects of complementary feeding (CF) and education on complementary feeding (CFE) on children <2 years old in low and middle-income countries. Results found CFE significantly improved height-for-age Z score (HAZ), weight-for-age Z score (WAZ) as well as reducing rates of stunting. No significant effect was observed on height gain nor weight gain. Food secure population analysis showed CFE had a significant impact on height gain, HAZ and weight gain, but not on stunting. CFE improved stunting, HAZ and WAZ in food insecure populations, as well as CF also showing improvement in HAZ and WAZ.

 

Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence the prevention and treatment of malnutrition but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about prevention or treatment of malnutirition on the basis of this summary alone.

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