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Nutritional status and weaning patterns of Benin City children.

Authors
  • Johnson, E J
  • Goyea, H S
  • Ogbeide, M I
Type
Published Article
Journal
East African Medical Journal
Publisher
African Journals Online
Publication Date
Jun 01, 1980
Volume
57
Issue
6
Pages
405–411
Identifiers
PMID: 6893180
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

The nutritional status of a sample of urban children in Benin City was assessed by anthropometric measures. The children exhibited satisfactory height for age as compared with the Harvard Standards. Weight for age was satisfactory for the 1st year, but then dropped suddenly in the 2nd year to approximately 85% of the Harvard Standard. The mean weight for age of children in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th years showed gradual increase to a near-normal level. This relatively good nutritional status was due in part to favorable weaning practices. All children were breastfed. The great majority received artificial milk supplements, though this is frequently introduced at an unnecessarily early age. The majority of children received milk feeds (either breast or artificial) until at least 18 months of age. Food other than milk tended to be introduced at an early age, usually by 4 months. The weaning score, derived from the practices reported by the mothers showed a direct relationship to the weight for age of the sample children. In other words, children who have been weaned in what was judged to be a satisfactory manner also tended to have a correspondingly satisfactory weight for age. Those who had been weaned in an unsatisfactory manner tended to be underweight for their ages.

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