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Dietary Diversity


Children of 9 to 11 months need increasing amounts and varieties of semi solid foods in addition to breast-milk. Meal frequency becomes an additional problem at this stage. Children’s stomach capacity is still small (ranging from 200–400 gms), and 3 to 4 feeds a day are needed to accommodate their increasing energy intake needs. Traditional complementary foods are often bulky and viscous (or conversely too watery) as well as lacking in energy, making adequate intake unlikely for young children. Low energy and nutrient density of feeds as well as lack of variety can result in diets deficient in energy, protein, iron, vitamin A and other micronutrients. It is important to continue breastfeeding; breast-milk is a good source of energy through 23 months (WHO, 2010; WHO, 2001).

For children in their second year of life (12 to 23 months), most children can eat the same type of food as consumed by the rest of the family. Problem child feeding in this age is same issues persist with age 9-11 months old. Frequently there is need to increase total food intake (breast-milk consumption may be tapering off significantly) through frequent feeds of adequate amounts of varied, nutrient-dense foods (WHO, 2010; WHO, 2001).

Dietary diversity is a proxy for adequate micronutrient-density of foods. Dietary data from children 6–23 months of age in 10 developing country sites have shown that consumption of foods from at least 4 food groups on the previous day would mean that in most populations, the child had a high likelihood of consuming at least one animal-source food and at least one fruit or vegetable, in addition to a staple food (FANTA, 2006; FANTA, 2007)

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This entry was posted on 22 October 2011 by in Balita, Gizi Daur and tagged , , .

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