International Journal of Child Health and Nutrition

Project Spraoi: Dietary Intake, Nutritional Knowledge, Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Health Markers of Irish Primary School Children - Pages 63-73

A. Merrotsy, A.L. McCarthy, J. Flack, S. Lacey and T. Coppinger


Published: 4 May 2018


Abstract: Objective: Examine dietary intake (DI), anthropometric measures, cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) and nutritional knowledge (NK) of school children.

Design: Cross-sectional study. Food Diary, NK questionnaire and 550m walk/run test were used to assess DI, NK and CRF respectively. Blood pressure (BP) was also taken and body mass index (BMI) and waist to height ratio (WHtR) were calculated.

Setting: Two primary schools, Cork, Ireland.

Subjects: Six (n = 49, age 5.9 ± 0.6 years) and ten (n = 52, age 9.8 ± 0.5 years) year olds.

Results: Intakes of fruit and vegetables, fibre, calcium and iron were sub-optimal. Unhealthy snacks and saturated fat intakes were higher than recommended. A total of 24.4% of six year olds and 35.4% of ten year olds were classified as ‘fast’. Furthermore, 45.9% of six and ten year olds had high-normal BP and 27.9% had high BP. NK was negatively correlated with sugar intake (r = -0.321, p = 0.044) in ten year olds. WHtR was negatively correlated with servings of vegetables in six year olds (r = -0.377, p = 0.014). For ten year olds, there was a positive correlation between WHtR and run score (r = 0.350, p = 0.014) and BMI and run score (r = 0.482, p = 0.001).

Conclusion: This study highlights, for the first time, DI, NK, CRF, BP and anthropometric data for Irish children and their potential combined effect on overall health. Study results suggest preventive initiatives are needed, in children as young as 6 years of age.

Keywords:  Dietary Intake, Nutritional Knowledge, CRF, BP, Health Markers, Irish Children.


International Journal of Child Health and Nutrition

The Influence of Perinatal Education on Breastfeeding Decision and Duration - Pages 74-81

Corina Zugravu, Michaela Iuliana Nanu, Florentina Moldovanu, Oana Cristina Arghir, Cristina Maria Mihai, Marina Ruxandra Oțelea and Simona Claudia Cambrea


Published: 4 May 2018


Abstract: Objectives: to evaluate factors influencing breastfeeding duration in an integrative model, considering both the organization of medical care and the perinatal education.

Methods: We conducted a cross sectional study with data collected in a face to face interview of 1,008 mothers with children aged between 9 and 14 months The questionnaire focused on the main characteristics of a Mother-Baby Friendly Hospital initiative and the type of perinatal education received by pregnant women. Correlation and partial correlation tests, non-parametric tests and classification tests were applied. Data were processed in SPSS 12.0 software.

Results: The positive effects of Mother Baby Friendly Hospitals Organization initiative organization were confirmed. However, the main differentiator for breastfeeding duration was the level of formal education of pregnant mothers and the active seeking of perinatal education (r = 0.22, p< 0.001). The perinatal counseling was correlated with breastfeeding duration only for the subgroup participating to structured, dedicated time slot apart from the regular medical consultation (r = 0.079; p = 0.014), independently of mother’s age, education, residence, time to first breastfeeding contact, type of birth delivery and rooming in. Our results support a broader approach to perinatal education than medical counseling during pregnancy to increase the voluntary participation of future mothers to the perinatal educational programs.

Conclusion: As mothers’ motivation to maintain the optimum duration of breastfeeding is a determinant factor, an earlier and sustained educational process, before pregnancy and after birth delivery, is necessary in order to create a general favorability for exclusive breastfeeding.

Keywords:  Perinatal education, rooming in, birth delivery.

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International Journal of Child Health and Nutrition

Eating Disorders and Depression in Adolescents: The Impact of Socioeconomic Factors, Family and Peer Relations - Pages 82-96

Goran Livazović and Iva Mudrinić


Published: 4 May 2018


Abstract: This paper analyses the relation between socioeconomic characteristics, family and peer relations, depression and eating disorders with 218 (144 female, 66.1%) participants aged 14-19 from Croatia. The questionnaire encompassed questions on socioeconomic traits, family and peer relations, depression and anorexia, bulimia, binge eating and orthorexia. Girls reported most dissatisfaction with the abdominal region (38.5%), thighs (31.2%) and breasts (16.1%). Boys reported most dissatisfaction with the abdomen (12.4%), chest (10.1%) and legs/calves (7.3%). Gender was significant for depression (p<.001), anorexia (p<.01), bulimia (p<.001) and binge eating (p<.05), with girls scoring higher on all scales. Age was significant for depression (p<.05) in younger participants, and orthorexia (p<.05) for older adolescents. Participants from vocational schools reported significantly higher family life satisfaction (p<.01), while gymnasium students reported significantly higher depression (p<.000), bulimia (p<.01) and binge eating behaviour (p<.01). Higher mother’s educational level was significant for anorexia (p<.05) and orthorexia (p<.01). Family relations correlated negatively with bulimia and binge eating, but positively with orthorexia. Peer relations were not significant for eating disorders. Eating disorders show positively correlated comorbidity (p<.000), and were significantly correlated to depression (p<.000). Anorexia is best predicted by bulimia (p<.001), orthorexia (p<.001), depression (p<.01) and mother’s education (p<.01). Bulimia is strongly predicted by anorexia (p<.001), binge eating (p<.001), depression (p<.001) and gender (p<.001). Binge eating is strongly predicted by bulimia (p<.001), depression (p<.01) and school type (p<.05). Orthorexia is strongly predicted by anorexia (p<.001), family relations quality (p<.05), the mother’s education (p<.05) and school success (p<.05).

Keywords:  Eating disorders, adolescents, family, school, peers, depression, anorexia, bulimia, binge eating, orthorexia.

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International Journal of Child Health and Nutrition

A Retrospective Comparison between the PNST and other Paediatric Nutritional Screening Tools - Pages 97-101

Vesal Moeeni, Tony Walls and Andrew S. Day


Published: 14 September 2018


Abstract: Background: Although it is widely acknowledged that hospitalized children are at greater risk of malnutrition, the available paediatric Nutritional Risk Screening (NRS) tools have not yet become universally used to identify those children at greater risk. Furthermore, the utility of one NRS tool over another remains unclear.

Materials and Methods:The utility of a recently developed tool, the Paediatric Nutritional Screening Tool (PNST), was evaluated using data previously collected in the assessment of three other NRS tools in 281 children from Iran and New Zealand. The sensitivity and specificity of each tool was then assessed based on the WHO criteria for malnutrition.

Results: The PNST recognized about half of the malnourished patients while the other three tools identified at least 85% of these children. The sensitivity of PNST for moderate (BMI-z < 2) and severe malnutrition (BMI-z <-3) was 37% and 46% respectively, while the sensitivity for other three NRS tools ranged from 82-100%.

Conclusion: In this data set, the PNST tool did not perform as well as the three more established NRS tools. Further work is required to provide optimal tools for the identification of hospitalized children at risk of malnutrition.

Keywords:  Malnutrition, Nutritional risk screening, paediatrics, children, hospital admission.