Background. Under-five children are one of the most vulnerable groups in any society to nutritional deficiencies due to many factors ranging from low birth weight and maternal ill health to socioeconomic and various environmental factors. Though it remains common all over the world, under-five malnutrition is particularly a very serious public health problem of developing countries like Eritrea. In this study CIAF was used as an anthropometric indicator of malnutrition as it identifies risk levels with mutually exclusive categories to identify both prevalence and higher nutritional risk with multiple anthropometric failures. Method. The study was a community based quantitative cross-sectional study conducted among children of Habero subzone between the ages of 6-59 months. A total of 335 children were included in the study. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and bivariate and multivariate logistic regression analysis in SPSS software version 22. Result. 60% of the study participants were found to have at least single anthropometric failure. 18.5%, 35.5%, and 38.5% of the study participants were wasted, underweight, and stunted respectively. Conclusion. The findings of this study showed high prevalence of malnutrition among under-five children of Habero subzone. Age of child, birth order of child, birth weight of child, duration of exclusive breast feeding, maternal age at birth, maternal educational level, and proximity of residence to health facility were found to be significantly associated with under-five malnutrition.
Keywords: Under-five, malnutrition, CIAF, Habero, Eritrea