The aim of the current study was to assess hemoglobin concentration and diet diversity of young children 6-24 months of age
A total of 65 young children were randomly selected from Boricha district, Sidama Zone, Southern Ethiopia. A cross-sectional design was used to examine the hemoglobin concentration of young children. A multiple pass 24 hour recall was implemented to assess the dietary diversity of young children in the study area. Capillary blood was taken from the finger of young children to measure hemoglobin concentrations and test was done at the health center using HemoCueÂ® 301 (Ãngelholm, Sweden). 11g/dl was used as cut-off after adjusted for the altitude.
The mean (SD) age of young children in months was 13(+2). Of the total young children 75.3% were classified as having low Hb, mean Hb concentration was 9.4(+2.7). The diet diversity score was <2 and the main food they eat was porridge and flat bread made from maize. None of them eat animal source food and vegetable.
The study contributes to understand the overall health status of young children in the study area. However further study is needed to investigate the cause of low hemoglobin concentration in young children. In addition, promotion of locally available foods to use in complementary foods should be encouraged.