[Sustained feeding in acute diarrhea in children below 5 years of age]
Martinez-Salgado H. Diez-Urdanivia S. Meneses-Diaz LM.
Centro de Investigacion en Salud Poblacional, Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica, Mexico. email@example.com
OBJECTIVE: To identify locally available and culturally acceptable foods for children with acute diarrhea, and test their acceptance and effect on the child's weight. MATERIAL AND METHODS: 142 mothers of children younger than five years of age living in rural communities were interviewed to indentify culturally accepted diets by means of group sorting. These were displayed in a multidimensional scale. A descriptive study was performed of the clinical course of 54 children, ages 4 to 50 months who received the designed diets during the first 48 hours of diarrhea. RESULTS: The designed diets considered age of the child, and stage of the disease. Children spent 47.6 +/- 22.2 h in the hospital during which they consumed 44.8 +/- 28.6 kcal/kg/day (additional to breast milk) and they gained 70.6 +/- 179.7 g. A direct relationship was observed between increasing age and larger caloric intake, and between this and greater weight gain. CONCLUSION: Children showed good acceptance of diets. Caloric intake was enough to prevent weight loss.