Factors Affecting Nutritional Status of Rural Households in Kermanshah Township

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Msc in Agriculture Extension and Training- Razi University

2 Associate Professor in Department of Agriculture Extension and Training- Razi University


Adequate nutrition is one of the critical factors in ensuring the health of individuals, families and communities. Food is one of the basic needs of human beings. Rural people produce meat, fruits, vegetables and other food materials. However, there is no evidence that they have a good nutrition regime. In Iran, grains, oils and fats, vegetables and fruits are consumed more than other foods, and animal products, mainly meat and dairy products have a low proportion, especially in rural areas. In general, in rural communities the average consumption of bread, dairy, sugar, grains, oils and fats are more than urban communities and most of their calories is provided by eating these products. Conversely, the average consumption of meat, poultry, fish, fruit and vegetables in urban communities is more than rural communities. Studies have shown that poverty, lack of access to enough food, ignorance, poor dietary habits, inadequate health care and unhealthy environment are the main causes of a poor nutrition. But sometimes people do not concern about their nutrition.
For producing healthy foods, producers should be healthy and this is primarily dependent on healthy and full nutrition. This study aims to explore whether or not those producing the food in rural areas of Kermanshah Township have inadequate nutrition. The study of nutrition culture of rural people can provide practical recommendations to relevant organizations for improving physical and psychological health of food producers. As mentioned, this descriptive correlation study aims to identify and assess nutritional status and related factors among rural households in Kermanshah Township. Specific objectives of the study are to determine 1. fruit and vegetables consumed by rural families per week, 2. meat, poultry and fish consumed by rural families per week, 3. grain consumed per week, 4. milk and dairy products consumed per week, and 5. factors affecting the nutritional status of rural households. The population of this study is all rural households of Kermanshah Township (N= 36169). 1340 households are surveyed by the multi-stage sampling technique. The Bartlett table is used to determine the sample size. The main instrument for data collection is a questionnaire developed in this research so that its validity is confirmed by a panel of experts and its reliability is confirmed using Cronbach's alpha coefficient. Data analysis is conducted in two parts: descriptive and inferential. The mean and standard deviation of analyzed data is used for determining the amount of meat, vegetables, fruit, dairy, bread and etc. The purpose of this section is the amount of food consumed per week by the villagers. The inferential analysis is undertaken to determine factors affecting the supply of nutrition by means of correlation coefficient and multiple regression analysis. All Analyses are conducted using the SPSS software.
According to the findings, 73 percent of the nutrition variability in the rural city of Kermanshah is explained by seven variables including household income, food prices, and the level of nutrition knowledge of household, father's education, mother's education, family members and access to food. The results showed that the consumption of breads, sugars, oils, dairy, cereals and tea during the week has the highest rate among rural households, However, other items such as eggs, potatoes, onions, tomatoes, cucumbers and eggplant are consumed modestly during the week and vegetables, meat and fruit have the lowest level of consumption during the week. Factors such as special food culture in the rural region, lack of knowledge of nutrition, poverty and low income, lack of permanent access to food and higher food prices are effective on the low consumption of vegetables, meat and fruit in the rural area of the Kermanshah city. So given the nutrition status of rural households in the study area, it can be concluded that they have difficulty in providing all kinds of food. Due to the impact of nutrition on community health, identification of nutritional status and factors affecting household food basket deficiencies as well as providing solutions to improve nutrition status is of particular importance. This is logical that those who are food producers must have good nutrition. Due to the high influence of income on the nutritional status of villagers it is suggested that the government considers special subsidies for the purchase of food in low-income and poor rural areas in order to tackle nutrition problems. Considering the importance of knowledge and nutritional information on the nutritional status of rural households it is suggested that classes with the aim of raising awareness of nutritional information for rural households to be held.
Alavi Naini, Amir Mansour; Keyghobad, Kaikhosro; Jazayeri, Abolghasem; Boromand, Mojhgan; (2003). The nutritional statusofchildren25 to 36monthsunderhousevillages inKerman city's health and factorsaffecting itinthe1999-2000, Kerman University of Medical Sciences Journal, 10, 2, 112-118.
Campbell, C. (1999). Food insecurity: a nutritional outcome or a predictor variable? J Nutr, Vol. 121, pp. 408–15.
Dasgupta, P. (1997). Nutritional status, the capacity for work, and poverty traps, Journal of Econometrics,Vol. 77, pp.5-37.
Fehresti Sani, Masoud, Saleh, Iraj & salami, Habibollah, (2002). Investigating the situation of poverty and income distribution in rural areas of Iran, with emphasis on the impact of government investment in development, Research Institute of planning and Agricultural  economy, Department of Planning and Economic Ministry of Agriculture and Department of Agricultural Economics Faculty of Economics and Agricultural Development, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Tehran University.
Garrett, J.L.; Ruel, M.T. (1999). Are Determinations of  Rural and Urban Food Security and Nutritional Status Different? Some Insights From Mozambique, International Food Policy Research Institute.
Ghanbari Adyvy, A. (1993). The model ofsupply and demand formeat, PhD Thesis, University Department of Economics.
Gharavi Nakhjavani, Saied Ahmad, (2005). PovertyinIranianhouseholds (household income showstheresultsofthe projectcost), Journal of Social Welfare, 4, 17.
Ghassemi Ardhayy, Ali (2008). A comparative study ofthe welfarestateinboth rural and urbanhouseholds, Journal of Rural Development, 11, 2, 1-20.
Holakouee Naini, Korosh; Fotouhi, Akbar; Borhani, Mehrdad; Pouya, Behzad (2005). Factors influencingmalnutritionin children6 to 30months,HealthCareCenters, Hormozgan, Iranian Journal of Epidemiology, 1, 2, 27-32.
Islam, M.A.; Rahman, M.M.; Mahalanabis, D. (1994). Maternal and socioeconomic factors and the risk of severe malnutrition in a child,Eur J ClinNutr, Vol. 48, No.6, pp. 419-424.
Khaledi, Kohsar; Parmeh, Zvrar (2005). The povertystatusinurban and rural areasof Iran (1996-2003), Agricultural Economics and Development, 13, 49.
Khamseh, M. (1996). Dynamicsofdemandinurban and rural areasofred and white meat, MS Thesis, Shiraz University, Department of Economics.
Kimiagar, Masoud; Bazhn, Marjan; Samimi, Bita, (2004). Evaluation ofagricultural supplyand its effect onfood consumption patternsin Iran, economy agriculture and development, Year XII, No. 48.
Kashi, Khodadad; Heydari, Khalil (2002). A practice analysisto determinethe effectiveness ofrural and urbanhousehold spendingonfoodneeds: the application of linear programming, Journal of Business Research, 25, 21-49.
Matheson, D.M.; Varady, J.; Varady, A.; Killen, J.D. (2002). Household food security and nutritional status of Hispanic children in the fifth grade1,2,3, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 76, No. 1, pp. 210-217.
Mohammadzadeh, Asieh; Dorostimotlagh, Ahmadreza; Eshraghian, Mohamadreza (2010). Food security andsocioeconomic factors andweight statusin adolescents, Journal of Nutrition Sciences and Food Technology, 5, 1, 55 - 62.
Norouzi, F. (1994). Food production and supply, Journal of Agriculture and Development Economics, 2, 37-72.
Nutrition and Food Research Institute of Iran 1991 -1995, Comprehensive study of food consumption and nutrition.
Rona, R.J. (1991). Nutritionalsurvailance in developed countries using antropometry, In Hims JH [ed.]; AntropometricAssesment of Nutritional Status Newurk; Wiley-Liss: 301-318.
Sahn, D; Alderman, H. (1997). On the determinants of nutrition in Mozambique: The importance of age-specific effects, World Development, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 577-588.
Salarkya, Nahid; Amini, Maryan; Abdollahi, Morteza; Eshrati, Babak (2010). The role ofeconomic, socialand culturalfedinfantsof the mothers, childcareandhealthstaff: a qualitative studyin the cityof Damavand. Journal of Nutrition and Food Technology, 5, 4, 75-86.
Taghavi Shirazi, Maryam; Eghtesadi, Kiarash (2004). Nutritionand health inMeymand (Volume II), Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization.
Trazkar, Mohamadhasan; Zibaee, Mansour (2004). Review onmeasuresof social welfareincomedistributionand poverty inruraland urban communities: the case Fars, Esfahanand Semnan Provinces, Agricultural Economics and Development, 12, 48.
Vaghari, Gholamreza; Marjani, Abdoljlal (2006). Acomparison ofnutritional statusof children under5 years inrural areas ofGorgan Township in1998 and2003, Journal of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, 11, 50, 101-105.
World Health Organization (1997). The World Health Report,Geneva.
Yildirim, I.; Ceylan, M. (2008). Urban and rural households' fresh chicken meat consumption behaviors in Turkey, Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 38, No. 2, pp. 154-163.