Poster Topical Area: Maternal, Perinatal and Pediatric Nutrition
Location: Hall D
Poster Board Number: 380
Objectives: The objectives of the study were to assess the effect of nutrient-based interventions on reduction of low birth weight (LBW), weight gain during pregnancy and improvement in nutritional status in infants at 6 months of age in community settings by the government primary health care system in Thatta and Sujawal districts in Pakistan.
Methods: A cluster randomised controlled trial was conducted in Thatta and Sujawal districts in Pakistan during 2014-2017. A total of 2030 pregnant women were enrolled during pregnancy and infants were followed until 6 months of age. Pregnant women received a monthly ration of 5 kg (i.e. 165 gram/day) of wheat soya blend (WSB) during pregnancy and first six months of lactation period.
Results: There was a significant difference in weight gain during pregnancy between intervention and control group (326 g/wk vs 307 g/wk, p=0.05). The reduction of low birth weight was not significantly different in both intervention and control groups (34.1% vs 33.8% p=0.90). A significant risk reduction in stunting (RR=0.85, 95% CI; 0.73-0.98, p=0.02), wasting (RR=0.78, 95% CI; 0.66-0.94, p=0.00) and underweight (RR=0.79, 95% CI; 0.70-0.90, p<0.00) was noted in infants at 6 months of age in intervention compared to control group. The compliance with the recommended intake of WSB as per the design protocol was around 70%, and 68% of women reported sharing of WSB with family members. Early initiation of breast feeding (RR=0.85, 95% CI; 0.73-0.99, p=0.03), maternal height (RR=0.86, 95% CI; 0.76-0.97, p=0.01), diarrhoea (RR=0.85, 95% CI; 0.74-0.99, p=0.03) and acute respiratory infection (RR=0.86, 95% CI; 0.74-0.98, p=0.02) was associated with reduction in stunting in infants at 6 months of age.
Conclusion: Improving the nutritional status of pregnant women during pregnancy and lactation period may have impact on infant's nutritional status. Interventions that reduce the risk of not only stunting but also wasting and underweight in children at 6 months of age may be a potential factor that can guide the Government and funding agencies in nutrition investments.
Keywords: Wheat Soya Blend, Weight gain, Pregnancy, Low-birth weight, Stunting, Wasting
Aga Khan University
Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan