SOUTH ASIAN JOURNAL OF POPULATION AND HEALTH; Vol - 1, No - 1

TRENDS AND PATTERNS OF DIETARY ENERGY SUPPLY AND NUTRITION STATUS IN SOUTH ASIAN COUNTRIES, 1995-2005

Written by:HARUN K. M. YUSUF, LALITA BHATTACHARJEE and BIPLAB K. NANDI

South Asia is the poorest region in the world after Sub-Saharan Africa. An analysis was carried out of the dietary energy supply and nutrition status of South Asian countries drawing data from various sources, mainly FAQ Food Balance Sheets. This was done using the FAQ method involving the estimation of the distribution function of dietary energy consumption on a per-person basis. During the decade from 1995 to 2005, all countries of the region, except Pakistan, improved their food calorie supply, but the average per capita food calorie supply of the region is still the lowest compared to the other regions of Asia and the Pacific. Within the region, Bangladesh, the second poorest country after Nepal, has always the lowest per capita calorie supply, with highest dietary energy supply from cereals (DES Cer %, an indicator of poverty), to the tune of 80%, followed by Nepal, 72%. Among the countries, Maldives has the highest per capita Gross National Income (GNI) (US$2680), the highest per capita calorie supply (2600 Kcal) and the lowest DES Cer % (38%). Maldives and Pakistan are the highest animal products consuming countries, but most of it is also rich in fruits and vegetables (7.3% of total calories), compared to only 2.6% in Pakistan and <2% in Bangladesh. The data reflect poor diversification in the diets of Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan. The diets of other countries, particularly Maldives, are relatively more diversified. Prevalence of under nutrition in total population is the highest in Bangladesh (30%) and lowest in Maldives (10%). Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan experience high under-5 stunting and underweight rates in the range of 43% to 51% and 47-48%, respectively, Sri Lanka has the lowest child stunting rate (about one-third that of Bangladesh, India or Nepal and one-half that in Maldives). One-way ANOVA test of the data shows that total per capita calorie supply is significantly (r2 = 0.937, p = 0.001) negatively associated with % under nutrition in total population. There is also a positive, but insignificant (r2 = 0.511, p = 0.110) association between national income and total per capita calorie supply. Thus, national income largely, but not wholly, determines food consumption and nutritional status of a country.

FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION STATUS OF MOTHERS AND UNDER FIVE CHILDREN OF CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS

Written by:M. KABIR, MYMUNA RASHID and RUSSELL KABIR

This paper investigates the nutritional status of mothers and children of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) who are culturally different from the plain land population. The factors affecting under nutrition of mothers and their children were examined using logistic regression model. The data were derived from the Nutrition Surveillance Project (NSP) of Helen Keller International which collects data using multistage cluster sampling design. A total of 9000 households were selected from four Upazilas of CHT to assess the nutritional situation of mothers and their children. Analysis of nutritional status data show that about 27% mothers suffer from under nutrition and 47% of their children are stunted. The Chi-square analysis indicates that there is a moderate association between homestead gardening practice and the nutritional status of the mothers and the children. Logistic regression analysis indicates that significant determinants of nutritional status of the mothers and their children are age, education, income inequality, seasonality, food consumption and practice of homestead gardening.

MALE INVOLVEMENT IN FAMILY PLANNING IN BANGLADESH

Written by:M. MAZHARUL ISLAM

With the recognition of men's dominant role in many societies including Bangladesh and their influence on women's reproductive behaviour, planners and programme managers of population and development programme have increasingly been promoting the idea of male involvement in reproductive health matter to make the programme successful. This paper examines men's knowledge, attitude and practice of family planning and their role and influence in reproductive decision making in Bangladesh. The study reveals that the overall knowledge and approval of family planning among men is very high in Bangladesh. Men in Bangladesh have positive attitude about small family size and they seem to support the use of contraceptive methods by their wives to regulate the fertility. Although, men are dominant decision makers in family life, but often they are less willing to take the responsibility of using contraceptive methods. Only a small proportion of men (4.8 percent) are using modern male methods: 4.3 percent are using condom and less than one percent are using vasectomy. The study confirms that the attitude towards family planning and fertility preference of the husband are more important in determining the couple's adoption of contraception than the wife's attitude and preference. The findings of the study stressed on need for greater involvement of male in family planning. It is an appropriate time to reassess family planning programme strategies in Bangladesh. New approaches are needed to influence men to bear greater responsibility for the cost of fertility control, both through greater use of male contraceptive methods and by helping them in obtaining appropriate method.

CORRELATES OF TIMING OF INDUCED ABORTION IN A NORTHERN DISTRICT OF BANGLADESH

Written by:MD. GOLAM MOSTOFA

Abortion is an important factor of reproductive health. Abortion in the second trimester is hazardous for material health. Hence for a complete understanding of the trimester based induced abortion, an attempt has been made in the present study to analyze the differentials between and within trimesters and to examine the influence of some socio-economic and demographic variables on the timing of induced abortion. The data for the present study was collected from 1230 pregnant women from Rajshahi Medical College Hospital and five Upazila Health Complexes of Rajshahi district. Of the total, 610 women did induced abortion and remaining 620 women received better treatment rather than induced abortion. Concerning induced abortion, 51 percent and 49 percent of the 610 induced abortion seekers women have done induced abortion in the first trimester and second trimester respectively. The mean lengths of pregnancy duration are 9.3 weeks and 15.9 weeks for the women who did induced abortion in the first trimester and second trimester respectively. The multivariate analysis shows that education, place of residence, contraceptive use, number of living children and reasons for induced abortion have sufficient effect on timing of induced abortion.

A SURVEY ON NUTRITION KNOWLEDGE OF PRACTICING PHYSICIANS IN SELECTED URBAN AREAS OF BANGLADESH

Written by:ABU TORAB M. A. RAHIM

Most individuals cite their physicians as a major source of nutrition information. Several studies in the West have indicated a lack of nutritional knowledge among physicians. As there is no published data on nutritional knowledge of practicing physicians in many cities of Bangladesh, a cross-sectional study was conducted on 245 physicians by face-to-face interview with a pre-tested questionnaire containing 16 multiple-choice nutrition-related questions. Collected data were statistically analyzed before and after scoring the correct answers. The average correct response to all questions was 48.7%. Majority of the respondents were found aware of the facts like nutrients acting as antioxidants, preventive action of fruit and vegetables against cancer, and energy value of fat. But they showed little knowledge on questions related to specific biochemical role of nutrients e.g., the association between excess protein intake and calcium loss. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) between nutrition knowledge scores (NKS) and socio-demographic variables showed that NKS was significantly higher (p<0.05) in 34-45 age groups than other age groups (20-34 and 45.80 years). Graduates from government medical colleges (GMC) except Dhaka medical college (DMC) showed higher (p<0.05) NKS than graduates from private medical college (PMC). The lack of satisfactory nutrition knowledge among the study physicians, therefore, supports the notion that physicians need comprehensive nutrition education in their medial curriculum as well as in continuation.

MATERNAL, CHILD AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH SERVICES IN BANGLADESH

Written by:MOHAMMAD ARIF SATTAR, M. KABIR, REJUAN HOSSAIN BUIYAN, MOHAMMED AHSANUL ALAM and U. K. MAJUMDER

Maternal and child mortality is a great problem in the world in the recent days. In Bangladesh Upazila Health Complexes (UHCs) are rendering much more needed Maternal, Child and Reproductive Health (MC-RH) and FP services to the most of the people. The main focus of the study is better utilization of existing manpower and fertilities and assertion for coverage and quality of services. The present study has evaluated the utilization of MC-RH services provided from different UHCs of the country in the light of social, economic and demographic characteristics. The study has identified the underlying causes of vast majority for which they are not receiving the MC-RH services and other health care facilities provided from UHCs. Moreover it has identified that the most of the service users are not aware about the UHC service properly. In the light of service provider they need more training on professional health service. They study has recommended for more training of the service providers and utilization of UHCs.

HEALTH DIMENSIONS OF POVERTY: AN OVERVIEW

Written by:S. S. M. SADRUL HUDA, AFSANA AKHTAR, and SEGUFTA DILSHAD

Poverty is a broader concept and one of the main aspects of poverty is health. Different studies show that there are negative correlations between poverty and ill-health. Present study is an attempt to evaluate the effects of poverty in health sector in Bangladesh. Thus, the specific objectives of the study are to examine the poverty situation on Bangladesh, interrelationship between poverty and health, key interventions in health sector by both the public and private sectors and NGO activities as well. The data collected through secondary information and analytical scanning effort is applied to infer the analysis. The results show the effects of policies and programs on health outcomes and the health-care system and their economic burden to society. This paper aimed at examining a range of policy and interventions efforts, highlighting success throughout. The paper further aims at creating greater awareness of ways to address the links between poverty and health with the hope that remedies can be developed to reduce inequities and improve the health of common people of Bangladesh.

KNOWLEDGE INEQUALITY BETWEEN MALE AND FEMALE ON HIV/AIDS IN BANGLADESH

Written by:A. A. M. NURUNNABI, A. H. M. RAHMATULLAH IMON and MOHAMMED NASSER

Globally women are becoming infected with HIV at a faster rate than men. Women accounted for nearly 41% of all people living with HIV worldwide in 1997, but this figure increased up to more than 50% by 2004. It is generally believed that the challenges to fight against HIV/AIDS are closely related with many economic and social factors of a country. But it is now evident that lack of knowledge and awareness about the causes and preventions regarding HIV/AIDS can magnify the risk of infection to a greater extent. Bangladesh is one of the least developed countries with a very low literacy rate and it has gender inequality in almost every respect. In this paper we try to show that the knowledge as well as awareness of HIV/AIDS differs significantly between women and men based on the data extracted from Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey report 2004.

FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION STATUS OF MOTHERS AND UNDER FIVE CHILDREN OF CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS

Written by:M. KABIR, MYMUNA RASHID and RUSSELL KABIR

This paper investigates the nutritional status of mothers and children of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) who are culturally different from the plain land population. The factors affecting under nutrition of mothers and their children were examined using logistic regression model. The data were derived from the Nutrition Surveillance Project (NSP) of Helen Keller International which collects data using multistage cluster sampling design. A total of 9000 households were selected from four Upazilas of CHT to assess the nutritional situation of mothers and their children. Analysis of nutritional status data show that about 27% mothers suffer from under nutrition and 47% of their children are stunted. The Chi-square analysis indicates that there is a moderate association between homestead gardening practice and the nutritional status of the mothers and the children. Logistic regression analysis indicates that significant determinants of nutritional status of the mothers and their children are age, education, income inequality, seasonality, food consumption and practice of homestead gardening.

FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION STATUS OF MOTHERS AND UNDER FIVE CHILDREN OF CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS

Written by:M. KABIR, MYMUNA RASHID and RUSSELL KABIR

This paper investigates the nutritional status of mothers and children of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) who are culturally different from the plain land population. The factors affecting under nutrition of mothers and their children were examined using logistic regression model. The data were derived from the Nutrition Surveillance Project (NSP) of Helen Keller International which collects data using multistage cluster sampling design. A total of 9000 households were selected from four Upazilas of CHT to assess the nutritional situation of mothers and their children. Analysis of nutritional status data show that about 27% mothers suffer from under nutrition and 47% of their children are stunted. The Chi-square analysis indicates that there is a moderate association between homestead gardening practice and the nutritional status of the mothers and the children. Logistic regression analysis indicates that significant determinants of nutritional status of the mothers and their children are age, education, income inequality, seasonality, food consumption and practice of homestead gardening.