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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/12876

Title: Nutritional and cognitive deficits of school-age children A study in helminth-endemic fishing and farming communities in Ghana
Authors: Tandoh, Marina Aferiba
Mills-Robertson, Felix Charles
Wilson, Michael David
Anderson, Alex Kojo
Keywords: Ghana
Nutrition
Cognitive performance
Fishing
Helminths
Farming
Issue Date: 18-Jul-2019
Publisher: Emerald Publishing Limited
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this study was to elucidate the association between helminth infections, dietary parameters and cognitive performance, as well as the predictors of undernutrition among school-age children (SAC) living in helminth-endemic fishing and farming communities in Ghana. Design/methodology/approach – This was a cross sectional study involving 164 (9 to 12 years old) SAC from fishing (n = 84) and farming (n = 80) communities of the Kwahu Afram Plains South District of the Eastern Region of Ghana, using structured questionnaires and anthropometric and biochemical assessments. Findings – Overall, 51.2% of the children were males, with no significant gender difference between the communities (p= 0.88). Average age of the children was 10.5 6 1.25 years, with no significant difference between the farming and fishing communities (p= 0.90). About 53.1% of all children were anemic, with no significant differences between farming versus fishing communities (p= 0.87). Helminth-infected children were significantly anemic (p= 0.03). Mean serum zinc level of all children was 13.1 6 4.57 mmol/L, with zinc deficiency being significantly higher in children in the farming community (p < 0.0001). About 7.5% of all the children were underweight, whilst 13.8% were stunted with a higher proportion of stunting occurring among older children (p= 0.001) and girls (p= 0.117). There was no significant difference in the Raven’s Colored Progressive Matrices cognitive test scores between the two communities (p= 0.79). Predictors of anemia were helminthiasis and pica behavior. Originality/value – These findings are relevant and have the prospect of guiding the development of intervention programs in addressing the persistent problem of nutritional and cognitive deficits among SAC.
Description: An article published by Emerald Publishing Limited and also available at DOI 10.1108/NFS-01-2019-0035
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/12876
Appears in Collections:College of Science

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