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Diets and Feeding Practices during the First 1000 Days Window in the Phnom Penh and North Eastern Districts of Cambodia

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Department of Fisheries Post-Harvest Technologies and Quality Control, Fisheries Administration, 186 Preah Norodom Boulevard, Phnom Penh 12101, Cambodia
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National Nutrition Program, Ministry of Health, 31A Rue de France (St. 47), Phnom Penh 12202, Cambodia
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United Nations Children’s Fund Cambodia, Department of Child Survival and Development, 19&20 street 106, Exchange Square Building, Phnom Penh 12101, Cambodia
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Institut de recherche pour le dévelopment, IRD/Université de Montpellier/SupAgro, 911, avenue d’Agropolis, 34394 CEDEX 5 Montpellier, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2018, 10(4), 500; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10040500
Received: 19 February 2018 / Revised: 22 March 2018 / Accepted: 30 March 2018 / Published: 18 April 2018
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Abstract

Although several health and development indicators have improved significantly in Cambodia, inadequate breastfeeding and inappropriate complementary feeding practices leave many children at high risk of malnutrition during the early stages of life. In 2014, the prevalence of wasting and stunting among Cambodian children under 5 were 10% and 32%, respectively. Thus, a strong focus on improving feeding practices within the first 1000 days window to reduce child malnutrition prevalence in Cambodia is needed. This cross-sectional study assessed the current feeding practices among of women of reproductive age, pregnant women, lactating women and children less than 24 months living in six districts from Phnom Penh and two rural provinces in the North East of Cambodia. The nutritional status of pregnant women was poor, with 21.4% having a Middle Upper arm circumference below 23 cm. While breastfeeding was predominant within the first 6 months of age in every district, feeding practices of pregnant women and children were a concern, as >70% of the children were not meeting the minimum acceptable diet, and most of the women did not improve their diet during pregnancy. Inadequate nutrition during the first 1000 days is highly prevalent in Cambodia. A comprehensive national Mother, Infant and Young Child Nutrition strategy needs to be developed and operationalized to improve feeding practices of Cambodian women and children. View Full-Text
Keywords: women nutrition; exclusive breastfeeding; complementary diet; policy; strategy; early childhood development; Cambodia women nutrition; exclusive breastfeeding; complementary diet; policy; strategy; early childhood development; Cambodia
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Som, S.V.; Prak, S.; Laillou, A.; Gauthier, L.; Berger, J.; Poirot, E.; Wieringa, F.T. Diets and Feeding Practices during the First 1000 Days Window in the Phnom Penh and North Eastern Districts of Cambodia. Nutrients 2018, 10, 500.

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