Stunting and Underweight

727 Words Jan 28th, 2018 3 Pages
To be considered severely underweight, a person must be below minus three standard deviations from median weight for age of the reference population (unicef.org, 2014). Growing evidence is emerging of the connection between stunting in early life and impaired health and educational and economic performance in later life. Stunting can have long-term effects on cognitive development, school achievement, economic productivity in adulthood and maternal reproductive outcomes (Dewey & Begum, 2011). According to the results of the Demographic and health Surveys of 1991 and 1996, there has been a marked improvement of the nutritional status of children under five years of age in Dominican Republic (See Figure 2). This improvement is also reflected in the improvement of under 5 mortality rates over time . A majority of under 5 child mortality is due to prematurity and genetic anomalies which are indicative of poor maternal health and nutrition (See Figure 3). Inadequate nutrition in young children and pregnant mothers is also related to increased risks of developing infections due to a weakened immune system (fao.org, 2014). Gaps in community knowledge involve behaviors like breastfeeding. In a study by McLennan (2001) it was found that reasons such as "fear of loss of figure or of breast shape" and "not wanting to…
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