A lot of reports show that there exist problem of malnutrition among Nigerian children. This study has been designed to assess the nutritional status of preschool children aged 2 - 5 years in Aguata L.G.A of Anambra State, Nigeria. The study was carried out using anthropometric measurements (weights and heights) and 3 day weighed food intake methods. Two hundred and eight preschool children were randomly selected from two (2) towns in Aguata. A sub sample of 20 children was randomly selected for the 3 day weighed food intake study. The mean weights and heights of the children ranged from 11.6 ± 2.19 to 19.3 ± 1.84 kg and 85.7 ± 7.61 to 111.6 ± 3.99 cm, respectively. Using NCHS (1976), Standard of reference, 7.7, 7.7 and 2.4% of the children were wasted, stunted and underweight, respectively. The daily energy intake of the children ranged between 51.2 and 62.9% of their energy requirement daily. Their daily protein, iron, calcium, and B-complex vitamin intakes were generally poor while that of vitamin A was above requirement values. However, most of their foods were of plant source whose nutrients are poorly bioavailable. Therefore, application of improved food processing and storage techniques, dietary diversification and fortification with intensified nutrition education would reduce malnutrition in the area.
Key words: Nutritional status, stunting, wasting, nutrient intake, preschool.
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