Child feeding and stunting prevalence in left-behind children: a descriptive analysis of data from a central and western Chinese population

Ban, Lu and Guo, Sufang and Scherpbier, Robert W. and Wang, Xiaoli and Zhou, Hong and Tata, Laila J. (2016) Child feeding and stunting prevalence in left-behind children: a descriptive analysis of data from a central and western Chinese population. International Journal of Public Health . ISSN 1661-8564 (In Press)

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Abstract

Objectives: To examine the effect of parental rural-to-urban internal migration on nutritional status of left-behind children and how this is related to guardianship.

Methods: We used UNICEF China’s maternal and child health survey data to investigate stunting prevalence and feeding practices in children left behind by rural-to-urban internal migrant parents. We also assessed the effects of primary guardianship which is related closely with parental migration.

Results: Of 6,136 children aged 0-3 years, over one third was left behind by one or both parents. About 13% were left behind by mothers, leaving guardianship primarily to grandmothers. Left-behind status was not associated with stunting, yet children who were cared for primarily by their fathers had a 32% increase of stunting compared to children cared for by the mothers (adjusted odds ratio[aOR]=1.32;95% confidence interval=1.04-1.67). Children with migrant mothers were less likely to receive age-appropriate breastfeeding (aOR=0.04;0.02-0.10) and a minimum acceptable diet (aOR=0.56;0.39-0.79) compared with non-left-behind children.

Conclusions: Guardian’s feeding behaviours varied, and was inappropriate for both children affected and not affected by parent’s rural-to-urban internal migration. Community-based infant and young child feeding counselling and support should be provided to all caregivers.

Item Type: Article
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham UK Campus > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Medicine
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2016 07:32
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2016 14:43
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/34180

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