Utilisation of small grain cereals and their contribution to the protein and energy intakes of Children aged 6-59 months in Yathui Division, Machakos District, Kenya.
Muema, Mary M
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A cross sectional study which was descriptive in nature was carried out during the month of September, 2004 among households with children aged 6-59 months in Kiunduani and Itumbule sub-locations of Kibauni location, Yaihui division, Machakos district. The main objective or the study was to determine the factors associated with production and utilization of small grain cereals and their contribution to the protein and energy dietary intakes of children aged 6 to 59 months. The principal tool or investigation was a structured questionnaire that was administered to mothers or children Care takers. Methods used were anthropometric measurements and dietary intake recall. Purposive sampling was done at District and Division levels whereas simple random sampling was done at location and sub-location levels. Systematic sampling was done at household level giving a sample size 01'260 households. The inclusion criteria was a child aged between 6-59 months. In households with more than one child at this age category, only one child was picked randomly as the index child. A sub sample of 36 households was randomly selected for the 24-hour dietary recall. Data was collected with the assistance or five field assistants. The SPSS computer package was used for data entry and analysis. Nutritional status indices such as weight-for-age, height-for-age and weight-forheight were computed using the Epi-info program. The findings of the study indicate that there was no significant difference in production and utilization of small grain cereals in households headed by people aged more than fifty years -and those headed by people aged below fifty years. The same was realized when the male and female headed households were compared indicating that the production and utilization of small grain cereals is not determined by age or the sex of the heads of the households. However, mean acreage of sorghum (0.4) was higher than that of finger millet (0.2). Energy intake from sorghum/finger millet was significantly low (y-error bars not overlapping) only among study children aged J6-59 months. This could be attributed to the fact that as the children grow older, they take less porridge and hence less of the small grain cereals. Protein intake from other foods by the study children was significantly higher than that from sorghum an~1millets except for children aged 12-35 months. This could probably be because ofthe fad that these children are within the weaning period. There was no significant difference (p>0.05) in malnutrition rates among study children in households which mixed the small grain cereals with other foods and those in households where mixing was not practiced. Finally, a significant relationship was noted between wasting, underweight and the sorghum/finger millet calorie and protein intakes by the study children whereas stunting did not show any relationship with the same. However, no signi ficant di fference was observed in malnutrition of the study children among households , that produced the small grain cereals and those which did not produce.
CitationMuema, M. M(2005).Utilisation of small grain cereals and their contribution to the protein and energy intakes of Children aged 6-59 months in Yathui Division, Machakos District, Kenya.
SponsorhipUniversity of Nairobi
Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Technology, University of Nairobi
SubjectSmall grain cereals