Relative effects of diarrhea, fever, and dietary energy intake on weight gain in rural Bangladeshi children

Stan Becker, Robert E. Black, Kenneth H. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Quantitative studies of morbidity, food intake, and somatic growth were done prospectively during 14 mo for 70 children aged 5-18 mo in two Bangladeshi villages. When random-effect regression models were used, monthly changes in weight were inversely related to proportions of days in the month with fever and diarrhea and positively related to energy intake per kilogram body weight. Interestingly, weight changes did not vary with age in this interval. Estimates indicate that increasing energy intakes to the recommended World Health Organization level would have a significantly greater effect on weight gain than would the elimination of diarrhea and fever. With energy at recommended intake and diarrhea and fever prevalence as found in US children, weight gain is predicted to be near that of the international reference population. Therefore, interventions aimed at improving dietary intake may be as important as infection-control programs for improving growth of children in poor developing nations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1499-1503
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume53
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1991

Keywords

  • Child nutrition
  • Diarrhea
  • Growth
  • Infant nutrition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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