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Abstract Digest: Issue 4, January 2011

Issue 4:  January 2011

In each issue of Abstract Digest, Alive & Thrive summarizes recently published research, highlighting key information about infant and young child feeding practices as well as program implications. Clicking on the title will take you to the longer A&T summary.


Rice bred to have higher zinc content could help reduce dietary zinc inadequacy among 2-3 year old children and women in rural Bangladesh

A survey sample of preschool children and their caregivers in Bangladesh demonstrated a high prevalence of inadequate dietary zinc intakes. Simulation exercises indicated that the adoption of rice bred to have higher zinc content would decrease the estimated prevalence of zinc inadequacy, especially among women.


Indonesian children who consume iron-fortified milk and noodles are less likely to be anemic

In a cross-sectional study of 6-59 month old children in Indonesia, children in both urban and rural areas who consumed iron-fortified powdered milk were less likely to be anemic, and children in rural areas who consumed both iron-fortified milk and noodles were less likely to be anemic than children who consumed only one fortified product.


A 6-month supplementation strategy with ready-to-use supplementary foods is more effective at preventing new cases of wasting and stunting than a 4-month supplementation strategy with ready-to-use therapeutic foods

In a longitudinal study in Niger, the effectiveness of a 4-month supplementation strategy with ~500 kcal/day of ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF) designed for treatment of severe malnutrition was compared with a 6-month supplementation strategy with ~250 kcal/day of ready-to-use supplementary food (RUSF) designed to prevent malnutrition. Children who received RUSF had a lower risk of becoming stunted, and in villages in which a shorter-term preventive supplementation program had previously been implemented, children who received RUSF also had a lower risk of becoming wasted.


Experts highlight the benefits of Kangaroo Mother Care in both low-income and high-tech settings

A review of current research shows that Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) in both low-income and affluent countries can lead to improved mother-infant bonding, reduced maternal depression, and earlier initiation and longer duration of breastfeeding. The current WHO practical guide on KMC needs revising and updating to improve coverage of the method.


Low-to-middle-income countries in Latin America and the Caribbean show improvements in breastfeeding duration over time

Using sophisticated statistical methods to analyze trends in breastfeeding duration and changes in the factors influencing those trends, researchers found that the majority of the countries included in the analysis showed improvements in breastfeeding over the study period. Changes in individual behaviors, rather than changes in socioeconomic and demographic factors, were the largest contributor to the positive national breastfeeding trends.