Complementary feeding practices in Pakistan
An in-depth analysis of PDHS 2012-13
The study on Complementary Feeding Practices in Pakistan was carried out utilizing data of Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey (PDHS) 2012-13 conducted by National Institute of Population Studies (NIPS).
The purpose of the study was to assess the food consumption and complementary feeding (CF) patterns by socio-economic and health characteristics of mothers and children of age 6-23 months. Complementary feeding is referred to the process starting when breast milk alone is no longer sufficient to meet the nutritional requirements of infants, and therefore other foods and liquids are needed, along with breast milk.
In other words the transition from exclusive breastfeeding to solid and semi-solid foods – referred to as complementary feeding – typically covers the period from 6 - 23 months of age. CF mainly consists of Minimum Dietary Diversity (MDD), Minimum Meal Frequency (MMF) and Minimum Acceptable Diet (MAD).
The objectives of the study were to:
• Explore the status of optimal consumption patterns and child feeding practices, with reference to breastfed and non-breastfed children 6-23 months of age;
• Determine the association of socio-demographic characteristics between food consumption and CF practices among children 6-23 months of age;
• Find out the association between food consumption patterns, CF practices and health nutritional status among children 6-23 months of age; and
• Draw recommendations for formative qualitative research and for policymakers and planners.