How immediate and significant is the outcome of training on diversified diets, hygiene and food safety? An effort to mitigate child undernutrition in rural Malawi

Anitha, S and Tsusaka, T W and Munthali, T W and Musukwa, M and Mwangwela, A and Kalumikiza, Z and Manani, T and Kachulu, L and Kumwenda, N and Musoke, M and Okori, P (2018) How immediate and significant is the outcome of training on diversified diets, hygiene and food safety? An effort to mitigate child undernutrition in rural Malawi. Public Health Nutrition (TSI), 21 (6). pp. 1156-1166. ISSN 1368-9800

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Abstract

Objective The present study examined the impacts of training on nutrition, hygiene and food safety designed by the Nutrition Working Group, Child Survival Collaborations and Resources Group (CORE). Design Adapted from the 21d Positive Deviance/Hearth model, mothers were trained on the subjects of appropriate complementary feeding, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) practices, and aflatoxin contamination in food. To assess the impacts on child undernutrition, a randomised controlled trial was implemented on a sample of 179 mothers and their children (<2 years old) in two districts of Malawi, namely Mzimba and Balaka. Settings A 21d intensive learning-by-doing process using the positive deviance approach. Subjects Malawian children and mothers. Results Difference-in-difference panel regression analysis revealed that the impacts of the comprehensive training were positive and statistically significant on the Z-scores for wasting and underweight, where the effects increased constantly over time within the 21d time frame. As for stunting, the coefficients were not statistically significant during the 21d programme, although the level of significance started increasing in 2 weeks, indicating that stunting should also be alleviated in a slightly longer time horizon. Conclusions The study clearly suggests that comprehensive training immediately guides mothers into improved dietary and hygiene practices, and that improved practices take immediate and progressive effects in ameliorating children’s undernutrition.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Research Program : East & Southern Africa
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health
CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Cereals
CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes
CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets
Uncontrolled Keywords: Undernutrition, Complementary feeding, Malnutrition, Randomised controlled trial, Malawi, Food safety, Malawian children, Dietary and hygiene practices, Child undernutrition
Subjects: Others > Food and Nutrition
Others > Food Security
Others > Africa
Others > Malawi
Depositing User: Mr Ramesh K
Date Deposited: 05 Apr 2018 05:57
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2018 06:00
URI: http://oar.icrisat.org/id/eprint/10522
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1368980017003652
Projects: UNSPECIFIED
Funders: McKnight Foundation, CGIAR Research Programs on A4NH (Agriculture for Nutrition and Health) and GL (Grain Legumes)
Acknowledgement: Acknowledgements: The authors sincerely thank Mr Gift H. Twanje and Dr Judith Mkwaila for their technical support in this research. Financial support: This work was funded by the Collaborative Crop Research Program of the McKnight Foundation and CGIAR Research Programs on A4NH (Agriculture for Nutrition and Health) and GL (Grain Legumes). The funders had no role in the design, analysis or writing of this article. Conflict of interest: None. Authorship: A.S., T.W.T. and P.O. contributed to the conception, design, analysis, interpretation and discussion of the data, and wrote the final version of the manuscript. T.W.M., M. Musukawa, L.K., N.K. and M. Musoke contributed to data collection and analysis. A.M., Z.K. and T.M. contributed to writing and revised the manuscript. Ethics of human subject participation: This study was approved by the Ministry of Health, Malawi.
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