Percentage of stunting among children decreasesPema Lhaden, Thimphu
Feb 4 2016
The percentage of stunting among children, below the age of five, has decreased by about 12 percent, according to the National Nutrition Survey Report, 2015. The figure stood at 33 percent in 2010. Stunting in children occur if they suffer from chronic malnutrition.
The Department of Public Health says improved living standards and more expectant mothers visiting antenatal care centers resulted in the decrease.
Public health’s programme officer, Laigden Dzed they still have a lot of work to do especially when it comes to complementary feeding.
World Health Organization says complementary foods should be added to the diet of a child when breast milk is no longer enough to meet the nutritional needs of the infant.
The report also the decrease of stunting among children is prominent in the higher echelon of society economically with about 73 percent.
In the lower strata of the society the decrease was just about 15 percent. Poor families cannot afford nutritional food products suitable for children’s consumption, the report said.
The survey reveals higher prevalence of stunting among children in the eastern parts of the country.
Meanwhile, the report calls for dietary diversification in food items for children aged five years and below. Organic vegetables and fruits are highly recommended for children to prevent stunting. Among others are maintenance of hygiene and sanitation and adequate breastfeeding.
Health minister, Tandin Wangchuk released the released the report, this morning.