Feeding Practices and Nutrition Outcomes in Children: Examining the Practices of Caregivers Living in a Rural Setting

Joyce Nankumbi, Joshua Kanaabi Muliira, Margaret K. Kabahenda

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Malnutrition has lifelong and irreversible effects, especially when it occurs in the early stages of infancy. This study examined infants and young children feeding practices (IYCFPs) using the Child Feeding Index (CFI) in a sample of 232 children aged 0 to 24 months and their caregivers living in a rural Ugandan district. A cross-sectional design was used to collect data about the children's weight and height and the feeding practices of their caregivers. Results show that caregivers' IYCFPs were suboptimal. The majority of caregivers were biological mothers of the children (97%), but their practice of exclusive breastfeeding was low (34%). Most mothers initiated breastfeeding early (61%) but also introduced other feeds before the recommended time. Complementary feeding was characterized by early introduction of age-inappropriate feeds and inadequate feeding. The CFI showed that only 39% of children in the age group of 9 to 12 months and 9% of children in the age group of 12 to 24 months received the recommended number of meals in a day. Analysis of children's nutritional status showed that 33% were stunted and 13% were underweight, and there were significant differences in nutrition outcome of the children according to their caregivers' IYCFPs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-380
Number of pages8
JournalInfant, Child, and Adolescent Nutrition
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012



  • child feeding index
  • feeding practices
  • nutrition
  • rural
  • Uganda

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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