Household and environmental factors influencing anthropometric outcomes in pre-school children in a rural Ethiopian community uri icon

abstract

  • This article tests the hypothesis that anthropometrical outcomes in preschool children are a function of complex interaction between food, nutrition, health, and other physical environmental conditions within which children live and grow. A system of simultaneous equations is used to test the above hypothesis using data from an Ethiopian highland community. The results show that a child's nutritional and health status are jointly determined by dietary intake, well-being of the mother as the primary caregiver, and the state of the physical environment for agricultural production and healthy living. Among other factors, children were found to be in better health with an increase in the number of cows in their households' livestock herds. The revealed interrelatedness and complexities of cause and effect clearly dictate need for a multi- or transdisciplinary approach to research and development addressing health, nutrition, sanitation, agricultural production practices, among other factors for alleviating the nutritional and health problems of children and rural households.

publication date

  • 2005
  • 2005