Maternal and Child Nutrition The First 1000 Days: Setting the Future

Editor(s): Z. Bhutta, J. Bhatia, S. Kalhan NNI Workshop Series (NNIW) Vol.74 , 2012

Summary

Nutrition in the first 1000 days, is a subject discussed widely. Therefore NNI dedicated a workshop to this important topic. Three renown chairs, Prof. Z. Bhutta, Prof J. Bhatia, Prof. S. Kalhan established an outstanding scientific review. Most importantly, it was highlighted that prevention  actually has to start before pregnancy, i.e. with the health of adolescent girls, being in childbearing age, throughout pregnancy and lactation. Overall the importance of appropriate diets during this critical period of high plasticity have been reviewed during the workshop. Finally, it was emphasized that the economic burden of low birth weight and later consequences, such as low education and reduced labour capacity, as well as the elevated risk of metabolic diseases later in life should drive the public health agenda.

ARTICLES
  • The Epidemiology of Low Birthweight

    Author(s): M. Kramer

    In this paper, I review the epidemiology of low birthweight (LBW). I begin by defining LBW and emphasizing the distinction between infants who are born early (preterm) and those who are born small for their gestational age (SGA). I then review data on the global burden of preterm birth and SGA and the evidence bearing on whether ‘one size fits all’, i.e. whether a single birthweight (or birthweight for gestational age) cutoff is appropriate for different regions and population subgroups. I summarize what is known about the etiologic determinants of preterm and SGA birth, how they differ among countries of varying socioeconomic development and prevalence of risk factors, and how they are changing over time. I conclude with a critical appraisal of LBW prevention as a public health priority and argue that reducing fetal and infant mortality is a more important and achievable target for intervention.

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