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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 18-23

Dietary pattern of undernourished children and their Vitamin A status in institute of child health Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Zaria


1 Department of Paediatrics, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Kaduna, Nigeria
2 Department of Chemical Pathology, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria, Kaduna, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sakinatu Mahadi Abdullahi
Department of Paediatrics, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika Zaria, Kaduna
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/njbcs.njbcs_11_20

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Context: Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) affects an estimated six million pre school children in Nigeria and 20 million in Africa. When associated with severe undernutrition, it increases both morbidity and mortality of under five children. Aims: The study was aimed to determine the dietary pattern and its relationship with Vitamin A levels in undernourished children and controls in Institute of Child Health (ICH), Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Zaria. Settings and Design: This was a case–control, hospital based descriptive study carried out at the ICH Banzazzau, Zaria. Materials and Methods: Systematic sampling method was adopted to select undernourished children aged 6–59 months for the study. A semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire was developed following the International Vitamin A Consultative Group guidelines for dietary assessment of Vitamin A intake. The questionnaire consisted of a list of 22 food items obtained during survey from local markets. Serum Vitamin A level was analysed by high performance liquid chromatography. The frequency of values below a cut off, usually taken as 0.70 μmol/L (20 μg/dl) for low and 0.35 μmol/L (10 μg/dl) for deficiency. Statistical analysis: The data were analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 20.0. Results: The prevalence of low serum Vitamin A level (10–<20 μg/dl) in this study among the cases is 16.7%, with the highest prevalence of 15.9% seen in severe wasting. However, the prevalence of cases with deficient serum Vitamin A (<10 μg/dl) was 4.5% in which severe wasting accounted for all the cases. Interestingly, the prevalence of low serum Vitamin A levels among the controls was also found to be 16.7%, and there was no VAD among the control groups. About 20% of children in Zaria (controls) were moderate to high risk of poor intake, while 37.3% were at low risk and 42.7% had satisfactory intake of Vitamin A rich foods. Among the malnourished patients, 53.4% were at moderate to high risk of poor intake, while 21.3% were at low risk and 25.3% had satisfactory intake of Vitamin A rich foods. Conclusion: This study simply demonstrated low intake of Vitamin A among undernourished children in Zaria.


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