LRH Docs find 20% children malnourished

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Doctors at Lady Ridgeway Hospital for Children claim that 20 per cent of the children admitted to the hospital are malnourished due to the rising cost of living and food shortage.

While the cause for malnutrition can be attributed to the on-going economic crisis and food shortage, the situation could be avoided if the children were given more vegetables to eat, according to Dr. Deepal Perera, Consultant Paediatrician at the hospital.

He stated that they tested 53 children in Ward 02 of the hospital last week and discovered that 20 per cent were malnourished. “

All of them had also suffered from acute malnutrition, making this a difficult situation.”

The test was carried out after it was discovered that the children’s weight and height were below average. This is because the children are not getting enough carbohydrates, proteins, lipids, and vitamins. Breast milk is no longer sufficient to provide nutrition to a child after six months, so certain food items should be introduced,” he added.

Children should be weaned on new foods such as Jack Fruit, Jack Fruit seeds, Breadfruit, Ladies Fingers, Gotukola, Thampala, Long Beans, and other proteins, he said.

“The majority of the carbohydrates could be provided to the child through rice or manioc. Vitamins should be obtained from green and yellow vegetables. Mothers and expectant women should consider their nutrition as well,” he added.

By Thameenah Razeek