Scientists prepped for nutrition survey
A team of scientists has been trained to carry out a nutrition survey in selected communities throughout Nigeria. The week-long training workshop, which took place from 27 October to 2 November, focused on preparing the scientists for the field and designing a good survey. IITA Head of Administration, West Africa Hub, Sylvia Oyinlola, welcomed the participants as she reiterated IITA’s commitment to tackle malnutrition in Africa.
High levels of malnutrition, deficiency, and overweight are being recorded in African communities due to inappropriate proportions of nutritious diets. “IITA cares about the nutritious value of what people eat, and works to fight malnutrition in Africa,” said IITA Food and Nutrition Scientist and Team Lead, Busie Maziya-Dixon. The survey aims to assess the prevalence, severity, and distribution of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies.
At the workshop, participants were trained to collect standard recipe data through the preparation of recipes by local women. The results would be used to develop a recipe database that converts the quantity of a mixed dish (a meal) into the weight (in grams) of each ingredient consumed for the planned dietary component of the National Food Consumption and Micronutrient Survey.
Nutrition surveys are important because knowledge of proper diets is not common. The information from this survey will be critical to guide the government and development partners in the alleviation of malnutrition.
This field survey comprises data collection on recipes and food components of host communities in the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria. The target population includes young children between 6 and 59 months old, non-pregnant and pregnant women between the ages of 15 and 49, as well as reproductive age adolescent girls from 10 to 14 years.