STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF PREVALENCE MALNUTRITION ON CHILDREN ZERO TO FIVE YEARS
1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY
The issue of malnutrition has become a household name among families with children from zero to five years. It is evident that the nutritional status of children is widely regarded as one of the well-known indicators of economic development of that particular region in question.
There has been high level of neglect of children by most parents’ reason being as a result of low family income, lack of parent exposure and poor implementation of infrastructural facilities such as good hospital that sees for children like of pipe borne water etc.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that malnutrition accounts for 54 percent of child mortality worldwide, about 1 million children. Another estimate also by WHO states that childhood underweight is the cause for about 35% of all deaths of children under the age of five years worldwide. The main causes are unsafe water, inadequate sanitation or insufficient hygiene, factors related to society and poverty, diseases, maternal factors, gender issues and overall poverty (Bhutta et al, 2008). The nutritional status of children under five (5) years of age is usually measured as weight-for-age, weight for height and height for age indexes. The common nutritional status of children under 5 years old in each region such as underweight, stunning and wasting are considered as nutritional disorders.
The evaluation of these criteria reflects the general health status of that region. Malnutrition is a clinical syndrome which the infant or child deviates from the main pattern of growth, the growth curve is downward and constantly locates under the curve of 3% of the height and weight (Nakhshab M, Nasiri H, 2009).
The malnutrition often occurs in the first years of life when the caloric intake is not able to provide the metabolic needs of the body. Consequently, the stored nutrients in the tissues will be consumed to preserve the life (Arezomaniance S, 2005). In children, protein-energy malnutrition is defined by measurements that fall below 2 standard deviations under the normal weight for age (underweight), height for age (stunting) and weight for height (wasting). Wasting indicates recent weight loss, whereas stunting usually results from chronic weight loss.