Journal Articles

Vitamin B-12 status in infancy is positively associated with development and cognitive functioning 5 y later in Nepalese children

Published: March 2017 Authors: Ingrid Kvestad, Mari Hysing, Merina Shrestha Journal: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
We measured the associations between vitamin B-12 status in infancy (2–12 mo) and the development and cognitive functioning in Nepalese children 5 y later. Vitamin B-12 status was assessed in infancy with the use of plasma cobalamin, total homocysteine (tHcy), and methylmalonic acid (MMA). At 5 y of age, we measured development with the use of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, 3rd edition (ASQ- 3), and cognitive functioning by using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, 2nd edition (NEPSY II), in 320 children. In regression models, we estimated...

Charting the cost of nutritionally-adequate diets in Uganda, 2000-2011

Published: March 2017 Authors: George Omiat, Gerald Shively Journal: African Journ. of Food, Ag, Nutr, & Development
Although malnutrition rates have been on the decline in Uganda over the past two decades, they remain high. Challenges to achieving nutritional improvements result, in part, from high staple foods prices, which raise the cost of the food basket and increase the risk of food and nutrition insecurity, especially for poor households who are net buyers of staple foods. Nearly two-thirds of Ugandan households are net buyers of staples, a pattern that highlights the potential importance of food prices as a key driver of food...

Nutrition Smoothing: Can Proximity to Towns and Cities Protect Rural Children against Seasonal Variation in Agroclimatic Conditions at Birth?

Published: January 2017 Authors: Amelia F. Darrouzet-Nardi, Willliam A. Masters Journal: Plos One
A large literature links early-life environmental shocks to later outcomes. This paper uses seasonal variation across the Democratic Republic of the Congo to test for nutrition smoothing, defined here as attaining similar height, weight and mortality outcomes despite different agroclimatic conditions at birth. We find that gaps between siblings and neighbors born at different times of year are larger in more remote rural areas, farther from the equator where there are greater seasonal differences in rainfall and temperature. For those born at adverse times in...

Food insecurity, but not HIV-infection status, is associated with adverse changes in body composition during lactation in Ugandan women of mixed HIV status

Published: January 2017 Authors: Elizabeth Widen, Claire Biribawa, Daniel Acidri, Winifred Achoko, Harriet Achola, Jeffrey Griffiths, Sera Young Journal: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
A cohort of 246 women [36.5% of whom were HIV positive (HIV+) and were receiving ART] were followed to 12 mo postpartum. Repeated measures included weight, fat mass, fat-free mass, mid upper arm circumference, triceps skin fold thickness [which allowed for the derivation of arm muscle area (AMA) and arm fat area (AFA)], breastfeeding, and individual food insecurity. Longitudinal regression models were constructed to assess associations between HIV and food insecurity and changes in body composition over time.

Erythrocyte fatty acid composition of Nepal breast-fed infants

Published: January 2017 Authors: Sigrun Henjum, Oyvind Lie, Manjeswori Ulak, Andrew Thorne-Lyman, Ram Chandyo, Prakash Shrestha, Wafaie Fawzi, Tor Strand, Marian Kjellevold Journal: European Journal of Nutrition
Essential fatty acids play a critical role in the growth and development of infants, but little is known about the fatty acid status of populations in low-income countries. The objective was to describe the fatty acid composition of red blood cells (RBC) in breastfeed Nepali infants and a subsample of their mothers and to identify the main sources of fatty acids in the mother’s diet, as well as the fatty acid composition of breast milk.

Individual, household, and community level risk factors of stunting in children younger than 5 years: Findings from a national surveillance system in Nepal

Published: January 2017 Authors: Jamie Dorsey, Swetha Manohar, Sumanta Neupane, Binod Shrestha, Rolf Klemm, Keith West Journal: Maternal and Child Nutrition
Stunting (height‐for‐age z‐score [HAZ] < −2) affects close to a quarter of the world’s child population younger than 5 years, with South Asia bearing over half of the childhood‐stunting burden. Stunting both reflects chronic undernutrition and sustained resource‐constrained environments and is often associated with an increased risk of impaired cognition, reduced economic productivity, poor health outcomes throughout the life cycle, and poor survival overall. In recent years, efforts to prevent stunting have been among the leading priorities of governments, donors, and civil society organizations, reflected...

Markets, transportation infrastructure and food prices in Nepal

Published: December 2016 Authors: Gerald Shively, Ganesh Thapa Journal: American Journal of Agricultural Economics
We study transportation infrastructure and food markets in Nepal over the period 2002 to 2010, combining monthly price data from 37 local and regional markets and 7 Indian border markets. We use a series of autoregressive models to study price determination, spatial and temporal price transmission, and price variance. We account for district-level agricultural production, correcting for bi-directional causality between output and prices using ground station rainfall data. In addition, to test hypotheses regarding the importance of transportation infrastructure we incorporate information on road and...

Climatic conditions and child height: Sex-specific vulnerability and the protective effects of sanitation and food markets in Nepal

Published: December 2016 Authors: Prajula Mulmi, William A. Masters Journal: Science Direct
Abstract Environmental conditions in early life are known to have impacts on later health outcomes, but causal mechanisms and potential remedies have been difficult to discern. This paper uses the Nepal Demographic and Health Surveys of 2006 and 2011, combined with earlier NASA satellite observations of variation in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) at each child’s location and time of birth to identify the trimesters of gestation and periods of infancy when climate variation is linked to attained height later in life. We find...

Optimizing the Multisectoral Nutrition Policy Cycle: A Systems Perspective

Published: December 2016 Authors: Sascha Lamstein, Amanda Pomeroy-Stevens, Patrick Webb, Eileen Kennedy Journal: Food and Nutrition Bulletin
Based on the data collected in Uganda, Nepal, and Ethiopia, the papers included in this supplement fill a critical gap in evidence regarding multisectoral National Nutrition Action Plans. The studies offer new data and new thinking on how and why governance, effective financial decentralization, and improved accountability all matter for nutrition actions in low-income countries. This introductory paper offers an overview of the current state of evidence and thinking on the multisectoral nutrition policy cycle, including how governance and financing support that process. It also...

Implementing Multisector Nutrition Programs in Ethiopia and Nepal: Challenges and Opportunities From a Stakeholder Perspective

Published: December 2016 Authors: Eileen Kennedy, Shibani Ghosh, Kedar Baral, Dale Davis, Diplav Sapkota, Patrick Webb Journal: Food and Nutrition Bulletin
Effective governance is essential for effective nutrition program implementation. There are additional challenges in launching multisector plans to enhance nutritional status. The present study compares the challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia and Nepal in designing and implementing a multisector plan for nutrition. A semi-quantitative questionnaire with open-ended questions was used to solicit information from senior national-level policy officials and other key stakeholders. The nature of the major nutrition problems in each country was similar; these include malnutrition (particularly stunting), food insecurity, and micronutrient malnutrition. The...