PERCEIVED CAUSES AND PREVENTION OF MALNUTRITION AMONG PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPILS IN ILORIN EAST LOCAL GOVERNMENT, KWARA STATE
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1.1 Background of Study
Reducing malnutrition among children under the age of five remains a huge challenge in developing countries of the World. An estimated 30 million under – five children are believed to be chronically malnourished in developing countries (Van de Poel, Hosseinpoor, Jehu – Appiah & Speybroeck, 2008). Similarly, about 54% of deaths among children of this age group are believed to be associated with malnutrition in developing countries (FAO, 2008). In Sub-Saharam Africa, 41% of under – five children are malnourished and deaths from malnutrition are increasing on daily basis in the region (FAO, 2008). Malnutrition is widespread in Nigeria, especially in the rural areas. This is partly due to inadequate food and nutrient supply. The 2003 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey revealed that 38% of under – five children in Nigeria are stunted, 29% underweight and 9.2% wasted (Ajieroh, 2010). These surveys indicated significant variation between the rural and urban areas with children from rural areas worse affected by malnutrition.