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Ecological and social patterns of child dietary diversity in India: a population-based study
Authors: Gausman J, Perkins JM, Lee HY, Mejia-Guevara I, Nam YS, Lee JK, Oh J, and Subramanian SV
Source: Nutrition , 53: 77-84; DOI: 10.1016/j.nut.2018.01.006
Topic(s): Child health
Country: Asia
Published: SEP 2018
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: Dietary diversity (DD) measures dietary variation in children. Factors at the child, community, and state levels may be associated with poor child nutritional outcomes. However, few studies have examined the role of macro-level factors on child DD. This study seeks to 1) describe the distribution of child DD in India, 2) examine the variation in DD attributable to the child, community and state levels, and 3) explore the relationship between community socioeconomic context and child DD. RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES: Using nationally representative data from children aged 6-23 months in India, multilevel models were used to determine the associations between child DD and individual- and community-level factors. RESULTS: There was substantial variation in child DD score across demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. In an age and sex-only adjusted regression model, the largest portion of variation in child DD was attributable to the child level (75%) while the portions of variance attributable to the community-level and state level were similar to each other (15% and 11%). Including individual-level socioeconomic factors explained 35.6 percent of the total variation attributed to child DD at the community level and 24.8 percent of the total variation attributed to child DD at the state level. Finally, measures of community disadvantage were associated with child DD in when added to the fully adjusted model. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that both individual and contextual factors are associated with child DD. These results suggest that a population-based approach combined with a targeted intervention for at-risk children may be needed to improve child DD in India. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. KEYWORDS: Dietary diversity; Global health; India; Nutrition; Social disparities