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Kavle J.A.,PATH | Kavle J.A.,Health Integrated | Mehanna S.,American University in Cairo | Saleh G.,Health Integrated | And 8 more authors.
Maternal and Child Nutrition | Year: 2015

In Egypt, the double burden of malnutrition and rising overweight and obesity in adults mirrors the transition to westernized diets and a growing reliance on energy-dense, low-nutrient foods. This study utilized the trials of improved practices (TIPs) methodology to gain an understanding of the cultural beliefs and perceptions related to feeding practices of infants and young children 0-23 months of age and used this information to work in tandem with 150 mothers to implement feasible solutions to feeding problems in Lower and Upper Egypt. The study triangulated in-depth interviews (IDIs) with mothers participating in TIPs, with IDIs with 40 health providers, 40 fathers and 40 grandmothers to gain an understanding of the influence and importance of the role of other caretakers and health providers in supporting these feeding practices. Study findings reveal high consumption of junk foods among toddlers, increasing in age and peaking at 12-23 months of age. Sponge cakes and sugary biscuits are not perceived as harmful and considered 'ideal' common complementary foods. Junk foods and beverages often compensate for trivial amounts of food given. Mothers are cautious about introducing nutritious foods to young children because of fears of illness and inability to digest food. Although challenges in feeding nutritious foods exist, mothers were able to substitute junk foods with locally available and affordable foods. Future programming should build upon cultural considerations learned in TIPs to address sustainable, meaningful changes in infant and young child feeding to reduce junk foods and increase dietary quality, quantity and frequency. © 2014 The Authors. Maternal & Child Nutrition published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Source

Kavle J.A.,Maternal and Child Survival Program MCSP | Kavle J.A.,George Washington University | Flax V.L.,University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill | Abdelmegeid A.,Maternal and Child Survival Program MCSP | And 7 more authors.
Maternal and Child Nutrition | Year: 2016

Optimal nutrition is critical to the attainment of healthy growth, human capital and sustainable development. In Egypt, infants and young children face overlapping forms of malnutrition, including micronutrient deficiencies, stunting and overweight. Yet, in this setting, little is known about the factors associated with growth during the first year of life. A rise in stunting in Lower Egypt from 2005 to 2008 prompted this implementation research study, which followed a longitudinal cohort of infants from birth to 1 year of age within the context of a USAID-funded maternal and child health integrated programme. We sought to determine if growth patterns and factors related to early growth differed in Lower and Upper Egypt, and examined the relationship between weight loss and subsequent stunting at 12 months of age. Growth patterns revealed that length-for-age z-score (LAZ) decreased and weight-for-length z-score (WLZ) increased from 6 to 12 months of age in both regions. One-quarter of infants were stunted and nearly one-third were overweight by 12 months of age in lower Egypt. Minimum dietary diversity was significantly associated with WLZ in Lower Egypt (β=0.22, P<0.05), but not in Upper Egypt. Diarrhoea, fever and programme exposure were not associated with any growth outcome. Weight loss during any period was associated with a twofold likelihood of stunting at 12 months in Lower Egypt, but not Upper Egypt. In countries, like Egypt, facing the nutrition transition, infant and young child nutrition programmes need to address both stunting and overweight through improving dietary quality and reducing reliance on energy-dense foods. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Source

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