Adolescence is the transitional period between childhood and adulthood. During this, nutrient needs are greatest. There is so little data on adolescents' nutrition and research needs are immense. The objective of the study was to assess prevalence and associated factors of undernutrition in school adolescents aged 10 to 19 years. A cross-sectional study was conducted at GobuSeyo district in December, 2016. Using multi-stage sampling technique and interviewer administered questionnaire data was collected from 640 adolescents. Statistical package for social science version 20 for data entry and analysis and World health organization Anthroplus for determination of nutritional status of adolescents were used. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to identify independent predictors. Prevalence of stunting and underweight composed 17.0 and 18.8% respectively. Adolescents who were stunted and underweight were 22.9%. Severely stunted and underweight adolescents were 1.7 and 2.8% respectively. Single predictor of stunting was fathers’ occupation (Adjusted odds ratio-AOR- 5.82; 95%; CI-1.15, 29.38). Sex and age of the respondents and fathers’ occupation were significant predictors of undernutrition. Thus, adolescent nutrition program focusing on age and sex of adolescents needs to be designed and implemented to address nutritional problem specifically in the study area.
Key words: Adolescents, GobuSeyo, stunting, underweight, undernutrition.