Dietary Practices of Caregivers to Children Aged 6 to 23 Months at Narok County Referral Hospital, Kenya


  • Sheillah Naserian Nkoitoi Department of Human Nutrition & Dietetics, Kabarak University
  • Michael Walekhwa Department of Biomedical Sciences, School of Medicine & Health Sciences, Kabarak University
  • Peter Chege Department of Food, Nutrition & Dietetics, Kenyatta University


caregivers, children, dietary practices , malnutrition


In Narok County, Kenya, where the challenge of achieving optimal child nutrition persists, particularly in the context of its arid and semi-arid climate, the prevalence of stunting among children is alarmingly high compared to other regions. Addressing this critical issue necessitates an enhancement of caregivers’ dietary practices. A gap in dietary practices among caregivers of children aged 6 to 23 months extends beyond Narok County to encompass broader regions in Africa, including Kenya. Consequently, this study was designed to establish the dietary practices of caregivers within Narok County for children in this age group. All approvals including ethical clearance from the Kabarak University Research and Ethics Committee (KUREC), a research permit from NACOSTI, and a permit from Narok County Referral Hospital were sought before the commencement of the study. This research adopted a descriptive cross-sectional design and a sample size of 108 children aged 6 to 23 months and caregivers were purposively recruited. Data were analysed using SPSS version 25 and ENA
SMART soft wares. Findings indicate a variation in dietary practices where 68.5% of children were still breastfeeding at the time of data collection; 88% of children were exclusively breastfed during the first 6 months of age. Cereals were consumed more than four times a week by 85.2% of the children although the majority of them (76.9%) did not meet the minimum dietary score. The overall prevalence of wasting, underweight and stunting was 29.6%,15.7%, and 23.1% respectively. The occurrence of stunting in children was related to dietary practices (χ0.245=2, p-value=0.011). The timing of complementary feeding displayed a moderate positive correlation with WAZ (r=0.305, p=0.001) and WHZ (r=0.047, p=0.627). In conclusion, caregivers’ dietary practices varied across the caregivers and contributed to the nutrition outcome of the children in dietary diversity, food adequacy, and nutrient intake. There need to promote proper responsive feeding practices among caregivers to children of this age group. 


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How to Cite

Nkoitoi, S. N., Walekhwa, M., & Chege, P. (2024). Dietary Practices of Caregivers to Children Aged 6 to 23 Months at Narok County Referral Hospital, Kenya. African Journal of Nutrition and Dietetics, 2(1), 39–47.

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