Dietary Assessment of Vitamin A and Iron Among Pregnant Women at Ndhiwa Sub-District Hospital-Kenya.
Othoo, Dorothoy A.
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The study was a descriptive case study done at Ndhiwa Sub District Hospital, Homa-Bay District. The main purpose of the study was to establish vitamin A and iron consumption levels of pregnant women as well as the relationship between vitamin A consumption levels and iron consumption levels during pregnancy. Studies on iron and vitamin A have in the past focused on children while maternal vitamin A and iron has not been exhaustively documented. Moreover few studies in Kenya have focused on the relationship between vitamin A and iron during pregnancy. The findings will be useful to policy makers and NGOs in designing and implementing programs suitable to improve vitamin A and iron among pregnant women. Data on vitamin A and iron were assessed using 24-hour recall of three days and food frequency questionnaire recommended by HellenKeller International (1999). Demographic and general health data were collected through structured interview questionnaires. Data analysis was done using Sight and Life vitamin A calculator for vitamin A consumption and Nutrisurvey for iron consumption. SPSS was used to analyse consumption frequencies of vitamin A and iron rich foods as well as demography and other qualitative data. Nutrition status was determined as BMI which was analysed using BMI calculator. Majority (80 %) had severe vitamin A inadequacy, 12% had mild inadequacy while 8% had adequate vitamin A. On the other hand, 65 % had severe iron inadequacy, 27% had mild inadequacy while 8% had adequate iron. Prevalence of dietary vitamin A and iron inadequacies at Ndhiwa Sub District Hospital was at 90%. Vitamin A and iron rich foods were irregularly consumed by most respondents. There was a positive significant relationship between vitamin A and iron consumption of pregnant women at Ndhiwa Sub District Hospital. Food cost and number of meals consumed per day are some of the factors that influenced vitamin A and iron consumption of pregnant women at Ndhiwa Sub District Hospital. Almost half of respondents (49 %) had normal nutrition status that is attributed to good nutrition status prior pregnancy. Number of meals consumed per day influenced nutrition status (BMI) of pregnant womenat Ndhiwa sub District Hospital. Number of meals consumed per day contributed to nutrition status more than vitamin A and iron consumption.