2Professor of nutrition, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
3Master of Science in Nutrition
A survey was carried out to assess the nutritional status of 2-3 year old rural children and some factors affecting it in the rural areas of Kerman. All of the 25-36 month old children (i.e., 1015 children) under coverage of primary health care center were included in the study. About one -third of the children’s mothers (334 mothers) were questioned. The data were collected using questionnaires and face-to-face interviews with the mothers. In addition, weight (Wt) and height (Ht) of the children were measured. The nutritional status was determined using various classifications based on weight for age (Wt/A), height for age(Ht/A), and weight for height (Wt/Ht) and the effects of various factors on nutritional status was assessed. Based on the Z-score, cut-off point under -2SD from median of the reference population (NCHS), 16.1% of the children were underweight (Wt/A), 15.6% stunted (Ht/A), and 7.2% wasted (Wt/Ht).According to percentile classification, 20% of the children were underweight(Wt/A), 19.2% stunted (Ht/A), and 8.8% wasted (Wt/Ht). A statistically significant relationship was found between Wt/A and birthweight of the child, health and maternal nutritional practices. A statistically significant relationship was also found between Ht/A and family size, birth weight child, food budget and maternal nutritional practices. Similarly, a statistically significant relationship was found between Wt/Ht and food budget. The results showed a correlation between Ht/A and family size, birth height of the child. A correlation was also found between Wt/A and number of rooms per person.