Nutritional status of pregnant women (under 20 years of age) with special emphasis on iron and folic acid status

Tshitaudzi, Gilbert Tshimangadzo (2003-12)

Thesis (Mnutr)--University of Stellenbosch, 2003.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Pregnancy and growth have been found to have a detrimental effect on the micronutrient status of adolescent girls. Dietary studies in adolescents have shown serious shortfalls in their dietary iron and folate intake. The competition for nutrients between the fetus and a pregnant adolescent may carry the risk of complications such as intrauterine growth retardation, pre-eclampsia, both maternal and fetal intrapartum mortality, the increased risk of birth injuries and low birth weight. The aim of the study was to assess the nutritional status of rural black, pregnant teenagers attending the antenatal clinic at Siloam Hospital in the Limpopo Province, with special emphasis on iron and folic acid intake, and evaluation of the newborn babies in terms of weight status and neural tube defects. The nutritional status was determined in 40 pregnant and 40 non-pregnant adolescent girls. The pregnant girls were selected during their first visit to the antenatal clinic, and the non-pregnant girls were selected from nearby schools. The demographic and dietary history questionnaires were used to collect information from the subjects. The dietary intake of the subjects was collected by the completion of a pre-tested quantified food frequency questionnaire. The anthropometric questionnaire was used to get information from the pregnant adolescents and the control group. The infant anthropometric measurements questionnaire provided information on the infant and the outcome of birth. Blood was collected from the pregnant adolescent girls and the control subjects. Anaemia was observed in 57.5% of the pregnant and 27.5% of the non-pregnant adolescents (haemoglobin <Il g/dl and <12 g/dl, respectively). The prevalence of low serum ferritin « 12 ug/L) and low transferrin saturation « 16%) was high in both the pregnant (30% and 60% respectively) and the non-pregnant adolescents (17% and 72.5% respectively). Iron deficiency was observed in 45% of the pregnant girls and 35% of the control subjects. The prevalence of iron deficiency anaemia in the pregnant girls (30%) and the control subjects (22.5%) was high. Low red blood cell folate in pregnant and non-pregnant girls was uncommon. Low serum vitamin BI2 was common in most of the pregnant girls. Analysis of the quantitative food frequency questionnaire (QFFQ) that was completed for 80 of the pregnant and non-pregnant girls showed that 55% had low dietary iron intakes «67% of the RDA) (p = 0.7307). Forty-five percent of the pregnant girls reported taking iron supplements. The QFFQ showed 20% of pregnant girls with low intake of folate (p = 0.0577). Forty-five percent of pregnant girls also reported taking folate supplements. Anthropometric measurements of pregnant girls and their dietary intake could not be correlated to the birth outcome. The social profile of the subjects did not seem to influence their iron and folate status and the outcome of pregnancy. The findings in this study showed that pregnant adolescents appeared to be similar to the non-pregnant adolescent girls socio-economically, anthropometric and nutritionally. We recommend that educational programmes targeted at adolescents and teenagers in the Siloam area should reach girls that could potentially fall pregnant. An educational programme must include: reproductive needs (avoidance of sex or safe sex); nutritional needs, especially targeted at improving nutritional status to meet future reproductive needs; early booking at the antenatal clinic and effective supplementation during pregnancy. The need to improve the dietary and nutrient intake of the adolescent girls should be addressed within the current framework of the Integrated Nutrition Programme (!NP). A food fortification programme with essential micronutrients such as iron, folic acid, zinc and Vitamin A to improve the micronutrient status should be promoted among the adolescent girls.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Daar is bevind dat swangerskap en groei 'n nadelige effek het op die mikronutriëntstatus van vroulike adolessente. Dieetstudies in adolessente het ernstige tekortkominge in dieetyster- en folaatinnames getoon. Die kompetisie vir nutriente tussen die fetus en die swanger adolessent kan verantwoordelik wees vir komplikasies soos intra-uterine groeivertraging, preeklampsie, verhoogde mortaliteit van beide moeder en baba tydens kraam, 'n verhoogde risiko vir geboortebeserings en lae geboortegewig. Die doel van die studie was om die effek van voedingstatus by swart, swanger tieners by die voorgeboortekliniek in Siloam Hospital in die Limpopo-provinsie te bepaal, met spesifieke verwysing na die yster- en foliensuurinname, asook die evaluering van die pasgebore babas in terme van gewig en neurale buis defekte. Die voedingstatus van 40 swanger en 40 nie-swanger adolessente meisies IS bepaal. Die swanger meisies is ewekansig geselekteer gedurende die eerste besoek aan die voorgeboortekliniek , en die nie-swanger meisies is geselekteer by nabygeleë skole. Die demografiese en dieetgeskiedenisvraelyste is gebruik om inligting van die proefpersone in te samel. Voorafgetoetste gekwantifiseerde voedselfrekwensie vraelyste is gebruik om die voedselinname van proefpersone te bepaal. Antropometriese vraelyste is gebruik om antropometriese inligting van die swanger adolessente en die kontrole groep. Die antropometriese vraelys vir babas is gebruik om inligting ten opsigte van die baba aan te teken asook die verloop van die swangerskap. Bloedmonsters is van die swanger tieners en die kontrole groep ingesamel. Anemie is waargeneem by 57.5% van die swanger en 27.5% van die nie-swanger adolessente (hemoglobien <Il g/dl en <12 g/dl onderskeidelik). Die voorkoms van lae serum ferritien « 12 ugIL) en lae transferrienversadiging « 16%) was hoog by beide die swanger (30% en 60%) en die nie-swanger adolessente (17.5% en 72.5% onderskeidelik). Ystergebrek is in 45% van die swanger meisies en in 35% van die kontrole groep waargeneem. Die voorkoms van ystergebrekanemie in die swanger meisies (30%) en die kontrole groep (22.5%) was hoog. Lae rooibloedselfolaat by swanger en nie-swanger meisies is nie algemeen waargeneem nie. Lae serum vitamien B12 was algemeen by die meeste swanger meisies. Ontleding van die gekwantifiseerde voedselfrekwensievraelys (KVFV) wat vir 80 van die swanger en nie-swanger meisies voltooi is, het getoon dat 55% 'n lae dieetysterinname gehad het «67% van die ADT) (p=0.7307). Vyf-en- veertig persent van die swanger meisies het bevestig dat hulle ystersupplemente gebruik het. Die gekwantifiseerde voedselfrekwensievraelys (KVFV) het getoon dat 20% van die swanger meisies 'n lae folaatinname het (0.0577). Vyf-en-veertig persent van die swanger meisies het ook genoem dat hulle folaatsupplemente gebruik het. Die antropometriese metings van swanger meisies en dieetinname kon nie gekorreleer word met die verloop van die geboorte nie. Dit blyk dat die sosiale profiel van die meisies nie 'n effek op die yster- en folaatstatus en op die verloop van swangerskap gehad het nie. Die bevindinge van hierdie studie toon dat swanger en nie-swanger adolessente meisies sosio-ekonomies, antropometries en nutrisioneel dieselfde voorkom. Dit word aanbeveel dat voorligtingsprogramme vir adolessente en tieners in die Siloam-area meisies moet bereik wat moontlik swanger sal word. 'n Voorligtingprogram moet die volgende insluit: reproduktiewe behoeftes (vermyding van seks of veilige seks); voedingbehoeftes, veral geteiken om voedingstatus te verbeter om ten einde toekomstige voorplantingsbehoeftes te vervul; vroeë besoeke aan die voorgeboortekliniek en effektiewe supplementering gedurende swangerskap. Die behoefte om die dieet en nutriëntinname van adolessente meisies te verbeter moet binne die huidige raamwerk van die Geintegreerde Voedingsprogram aangespreek word. 'n Voedselfortfiseringsprogram met essensiële mikronutriënte soos yster, foliensuur, sink en vitamien A om die mikronutriëntstatus van adolessente meisies te verbeter, moet bevorder word.

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