Optimal complementary feeding practices among caregivers and their children aged 6–23 months in Kisoro district, Uganda
Birungi, Tracy Lukiya
Ejalu, David Livingstone
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There are many risk factors for stunting, and studies most often corroborate complementary feeding practices as a significant risk factor. Information on the prevalence of optimal complementary feeding practices and factors that lend to caregivers meeting their requirements in Kisoro district, a district with high stunting rates, is mostly lacking. An analytical cross-sectional study that used secondary data from a USAID-funded project. Entries for 384 caregivers of children aged 6–23 months in Kisoro district were abstracted from the project database. The data was analysed using SPSS version 20. The association between independent factors and optimal complementary feeding practices was determined using multivariable logistic regressions at the three levels of the Socio-Ecological Model. Although 95% of the infants were introduced to semi-solid foods promptly, their diet was nutritionally inadequate as evidenced by the low minimum dietary diversity of 4.43%. Some of the key covariates associated with these outcomes included, the type of occupation (AOR=21.21; CI=2.03—221.26; p=0.011), community groups (AOR=0. 43; CI=0.22—0.83; p=0.012), not being married (AOR=13.25; CI=1.76—100.25; p=0.012), age of the child (AOR=2.21; CI=1.1—4.45; p=0.026); among others. The prevalence of MAD and MDD was very low in Kisoro district, even compared to national figures, putting these children at a very high risk of stunting. Increased advocacy is needed to support the community-level implementation of the IYCF guidelines.