Factors influencing nutrition and food insecurity in Kiroka village

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Sokoine Universitry of Agriculture


Nutritional status in children is an indicator of health and well-being at both the individual and the population level. Malnutrition rates and incidences are still high in Kiroka village. The aim of the study was to identify causes of recurrence of malnutrition among children below five years of age in Kiroka village in Rural Morogoro, Tanzania. Face-to-face interviews with the sampled mothers were conducted using a semi-structured questionnaire. Anthropometric data were collected using standard procedures and analysed using Emergency Nutrition Assessment by SMART program where Z-scores were generated and imported into the SPSS software programme for further analysis. Anthropometric indicators of weight-for-age, weight-for-height and height-for-age indices were employed to assess the nutritional status of children below five years of age. The prevalence rates of stunting, underweight, wasting, and morbidity were 43%, 13%, 3%, and 87%, respectively. Prevalence of underweight of children reported in Kiroka village increased between 2005 and 2007 from 19% to 22% respectively. Nutritional status of children is affected by both inadequate and quality of food, improper feeding practices, level of education of mother, household size, marital status and disease infections. Generally, children were more susceptible to malnutrition as age increased. An educated mother was less likely to have malnourished children. About 64% of the mothers were able to breastfeed their children within one hour after delivery. However, 85% of the infants in Kiroka village are given pre-lacteal foods such as thin cereal-based porridge and water. Only 3% of infants were exclusively breastfed for six months. About 39% of the children started complementary feeding when they were two weeks old. Duration of food shortage and household size had a negative correlation with weight-for-height z-scores. Community nutrition education andiii mobilization of community members to adopt practices that favour good nutrition of children are recommended.



Food in security, Nutritional status, Malnutrition rates, kiroka village, Morogoro


Nkuba mbela,D.E (2009) Factors influencing nutrition and food insecurity in kiroka village Morogoro