Nutritional Assessment of Preschool Children using Z-Score Analysis

Mostafa I. Waly1,2*
1Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Agricultural and Marine Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman, 2Nutrition Department, High Institute of Public Health, Alexandria University, Egypt
*Corresponding Author:Dr.Mostafa I. Waly. Email: [email protected]

Background:  Preschool years are characterized by striking changes in the physical development, language, cognitive and social behavior. Nutritional anthropometry is widely used for the assessment of the nutritional status of preschool children. Subjects: One hundred and twenty eight children (in the age group of 2-6 years) were recruited for this cross sectional study. We evaluated the underweight, wasting and stunting prevalence among this cohort using Z-Scores as compared to reference population. The middle upper arm circumference and body mass index (BMI) percentile were also evaluated. Results:Indicators of under nutrition were as follow; underweight (3.9%), wasting (3.1%), and stunting (2.3%) among the sampled preschool children. Conclusion: Stunting was the lowest among the examined preschool children. Overweight and obesity were not detected among the studied population. Conclusion: A nutrition intervention program should be developed and directed to this vulnerable group, preschool children, to combat these nutritional problems that might predispose children to under nutrition during adulthood.

Key wordsStunting, Underweight, Wasting, Preschool Children.

Waly MI.Nutritional assessment of preschool children using Z-Score analysis. Canad J ClinNutr 2014; 2 (2): 50-59