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Nutritional Status of Children. Measures, Estimates and Explanations. Malnutrition Indicators. Malnutrition indicators: Differ with respect to the stage in one’s life cycle. Intra-uterine Undernutrition: Low Birth Weight (LBW). Cause: Maternal malnutrition: Effect:

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Nutritional status of children

Nutritional Status of Children

Measures, Estimates and Explanations


Malnutrition indicators
Malnutrition Indicators

  • Malnutrition indicators: Differ with respect to the stage in one’s life cycle.

Nutritional Status of Children


Intra uterine undernutrition low birth weight lbw
Intra-uterine Undernutrition: Low Birth Weight (LBW)

  • Cause: Maternal malnutrition:

  • Effect:

    • Malnutrition during intra-uterine life.

    • Retards the growth and development of the foetus during pregnancy.

    • The foetus is born with birth weight lower than normal.

    • The cut-off value for birth weight is 2.5 kg(WHO).

    • Babies born with birth weight <2.5 kg are LBW babies.

Nutritional Status of Children


Childhood malnutrition
Childhood Malnutrition

  • Severe consequences if it occurs early in life.

    • Adverse impact on subsequent growth, morbidity, cognitive development, educational attainment and productivity in adulthood.

Nutritional Status of Children


Nutrition status children u5
Nutrition status: Children U5

  • Anthropometric Indicators:

  • Height-for-age (HFA),

  • Weight-for-age (WFA),

  • Weight-for-height (WFH), and

  • MUAC-for-age.

    • Most sensitive indicators of food security, vulnerability and overall socio-economic development of a country.

    • Stunting, Wasting and Underweight.

    • Z-score classification.

Nutritional Status of Children


Malnutrition indicators1
Malnutrition Indicators

  • Measure the clinical phenomena of malnutrition.

  • Standard cutoff points are used internationally to define under nutrition in children 6-59 months.

  • The cutoff points for nutrition indicators are derived from the WHO child growth standard population (WHO standards) or NCHS reference population (NCHS population).

Nutritional Status of Children


Stunting low height for age
Stunting (low height-for-age)

  • Cause: Chronic under nutrition retards growth of a child by height.

  • Stunting: child is shorter for its age.

  • Information requirement: Estimates of height and age.

Nutritional Status of Children


Stunting low height for age1
Stunting (low height-for-age)

  • Low HFA identifies past or chronic under nutrition (stunting)

  • Stunting indicates reduced linear growth

    • Cannot measure short-term changes in malnutrition

    • For children <2 yrs of age, the term is length-for-age/LA

    • For children > 2 yrs age, the index is referred to as height-for-age/HA

Nutritional Status of Children


Stunting classification
Stunting: Classification

  • Height-for-age up to -2SD = Normal

  • Height-for-age <-2SD to -3SD = Moderate

  • Height-for-age <-3SD = Severe

Nutritional Status of Children


Wasting low weight for height
Wasting (low weight–for-height)

  • Cause: Acute, short-run malnutrition

    • Affects only body weight.

    • “Wasting” of the body, i.e. loss of body mass compared to the body size.

    • Indicator: Weight-for-height.

Nutritional Status of Children


Wasting low weight for height1
Wasting (low weight–for-height)

Weight for-height:

  • Low WFH identifies current or acute under nutrition (wasting)

  • Useful when exact age is difficult to determine

  • - Weight for-length (< 2 yrs) or weight for-height (in > 2 yrs)

  • Appropriate for examining short-term effects

Nutritional Status of Children


Wasting classification
Wasting: Classification

  • Normal weight-for-height: If its weight-for-height is within 2 standard deviations (-2SD) of the median weight-for-height of a reference population.

  • Moderately wasted: If the weight-for-height falls below 2SD (<-2SD) but within 3 SD below the reference median (-3SD).

  • Severely wasted: If the weight-for-height falls below 3SD of the reference median (<-3SD).

Nutritional Status of Children


Wasting classification1
Wasting: Classification

  • Weight-for-height up to –2SD = Normal

  • Weight-for-height <-2SD to –3SD = Moderate

  • Weight-for-height <-3SD = Severe

Nutritional Status of Children


Underweight low weight for age
Underweight (low weight-for-age)

  • Composite indicator of long-term and acute short-term malnutrition.

  • The body weight may be lost from malnutrition for a long time => low weight-for-age.

  • Weight may also be lost from acute, short-term malnutrition => low weight-for-age.

Nutritional Status of Children


Underweight classifica tion
Underweight: Classification

  • Normal weight-for-age: If weight-for-age is within 2 standard deviations (-2SD) of the median weight-for-age of a reference population.

  • Moderately underweight: If the weight-for-age falls below 2SD (<-2SD) but within 3 SD below the reference median (-3SD).

  • Severely underweight: If the weight-for-age falls below 3SD of the reference median (<-3SD).

Nutritional Status of Children


Underweight classification
Underweight: Classification

  • Weight-for-age up to -2SD = Normal

  • Weight-for-age <-2SD to -3SD = Moderate

  • Weight-for-age <-3SD = Severe

Nutritional Status of Children



Mid upper arm circumference muac
Mid- Upper Arm Circumference (MUAC)

  • Low MUAC (<12.5 cm) indicates acute malnutrition among children 6-59 months.

  • Is relatively easy to measure and a good predictor of immediate risk of death.

  • Is used for rapid screening of acute malnutrition.

Nutritional Status of Children





Food consumption, energy and nutrient intake and nutritional status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96

Source: Helset al. (2003)


Nutritional Status of Children status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


Nutritional Status of Children status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


Nutritional Status of Children status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


Nutritional Status of Children status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


Nutritional Status of Children status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


Thank you

Thank You status in rural Bangladesh: Changes from 1981 – 1982 to 1995 – 96


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