A Comparative Study to Assess the Nutritional Status of Urban and Rural Pre-school Children


Young Nurses Journal of Research. October 2021, 1(1), 08-13

M Justin Jaspher

Professor, St. Mary's College of Nursing-Lucknow

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Background of the Study: Stunting, wasting, and underweight are the important nutritional status indicators for children. “While stunting is caused by long-term insufficient nutrient intake and repeated infections, wasting is a result of acute food shortage and illness. Wasting, on the other hand, is a strong predictor of mortality and requires urgent response. Underweight combines information about linear growth obstruction and weight for length/height” [7]. Understanding differences in the determinants of childhood malnutrition between urban and rural areas is important to design appropriate, relevant program and policy implementation. Aims & Objectives: The aim of the study is to assess and compare the prevalence of underweight, stunting and wasting among pre-school children in rural and urban area.

Methodology: Convenient random sampling technique was used to gather data in 100 samples, 50 each from rural and urban population. Data was collected by using structured interview and anthropometric assessment. The questionnaire consisted of two parts, i.e., demographic data and questions regarding anthropometric assessment, age, height, weight etc.  The three nutritional status indicators, HAZ - z-score for height-for-age, (Stunting), WAZ - z-score for weight for age (Underweight), WHZ- z – score weight for height (Wasting) were calculated using WHO Anthro survey application.

Results: This study revealed that Prevalence of acute malnutrition (stunting) among rural pre-school children is 28% which was higher than the prevalence of acute malnutrition in urban pre-school children which was only 18 %. Prevalence of Underweight among rural pre-school children is 36% which was higher than the prevalence of underweight in urban pre-school children which was only 34 %. Prevalence of chronic malnutrition (wasting) among rural pre-school children is 32% which was lower than the prevalence of chronic malnutrition in urban pre-school children in which it was 46%.  There is no significant association between the nutritional status of the rural and urban pre-school children with the selected demographic variables. This indicates even though there was a significant difference between the rural and urban pre-school children, both group of children are at the risk of one or other malnutrition related problems.

Conclusion: This study suggests that even though there was a significant difference between the rural and urban pre-school children, both group of children are at the risk of one or other malnutrition problem.

Keywords: Malnutrition, Preschool Children, Stunting, Overnutrition, Wasting

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Kavichelvi K (Chief Editor)
ST.Mary's College of Nursing, Kursi Road, Lucknow, editor@ynj

G Ramalakshmi (Associate Editor)
SGRRIM&HS College of Nursing, Patel Nagar, Dehradun,

Merlin Cheema (Associate Editor)
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SGPGIMS College of Nursing, Lucknow,

DR. R Babu, Ph.D (Associate Editor)
Mayo College of Nursing, Barabanki, Lucknow,

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PSG College of Nursing, Coimbatore, Tamilnadu

M Suresh (Associate Editor)
GSRM College of Nursing, Sarojini Nagar, Lucknow,

R Ramalakshmi (Associate Editor)
Shivparvathi Mandradiar Institute of Health Sciences,Triupur District, Tamilnadu,

M Justin Jaspher (Managing Editor)
St. Mary's College of Nursing, Kursi Road, Lucknow,

Dr. Jabin Jose Wel (Associate Editor)
St. Mary's Institutions of Nursing, Kempapura, Hebbal, Bangalore,



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