Study of Nutritional Status and Identification of Associated Risk Factors in Children Below Five Years of Age in an Urban Slum of Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
Background: Child malnutrition is a single large contributor to under-five mortality due to greater susceptibility to infections and slow recovery from illness. Prevalence of malnutrition is high in Madhya Pradesh as compared to other states of India. Aims & Objectives: The study was aimed to find the prevalence, and study the risk factors for malnutrition, in children under the age of five years, in an urban slum, and also recommend appropriate remedial measures. Material and Methods: A community-based, cross-sectional study was conducted on 93 children under the age of 5 years in an urban slum Pipaliya Pende Khan in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh from August 2013 to October 2013. Anthropometric measurements like weight and height were recorded. They were also made to fill a pretested questionnaire. Descriptive statistical analysis was done. Results: The prevalence of stunting, underweight and wasting according to WHO Child Growth Standards, April 2006 was 62.6% (52.1%, 73.1%), 41.9%(31.4% , 52.5%) and 17.4% (9.1% , 25.7%) respectively. Stunting was associated with educational status of mother, more prevalent in children of less literate mother. Underweight was associated with both educational status of mother and type of toilet facility. Wasting was more prevalent in Muslim community and families with low socio-economic status. Conclusions: The study shows very high prevalence of the malnutrition, in the given community. The results also confirmed that education status of mother, type of toilet facility, religion and socio-economic status are some of the key determinants of nutritional status of children under the age of 5 years.