Climate change impact on nutritional status of preschoolers: A cross sectional study

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Noushadali M

Abstract

Objective : This study attempts to explore the impact of climate change on the nutritional status of children in district Malappuram in Kerala state of India. Method: The climate change is likely to increase the extreme weather situations. Extreme weather leads to drought in summer and torrential rains and flood in monsoon. Both affect the availability of clean drinking water. On the backdrop of this the present study investigates the effect of climate change influence which is represented by the access to clean drinking water on the nutritional status of children under five years of age. Findings: The multivariate analysis of the study using a cross-sectional data from district Malappuram found that the influence of environment in determining the nutritional status of children which is measured by anthropometric indices: weight-for-age, is profound. Novelty : The study quantified the effects of climate change on children’s health taking a selected indicator: undernutrition. A detailed study of the profoundness of this according to gender and socioeconomic differentials are need to be further investigated. The climate change mainly affects child nutrition through weather related disasters like flood and drought and resultant decreased water quality and quantity. Hence, our public health programmes should include some climate change preparedness strategies. Application: The findings help to formulate special health investment policies in the region which are facing climatic stress especially coastal regions.

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