Food and Nutrition in Malaysia Children
Two nationwide studies, namely South East Asian Nutrition Survey (SEANUTS Malaysia) and MyBreakfast Study showed that 13 to 17 percent of children aged between 6 to 12 years old were either overweight or obese. From dietary assessment, majority of children achieved the Malaysian recommended nutrient intake (RNI) for energy and protein, however more than 50% did not fulfill the RNI for calcium and vitamin D.
Majority of children consumed breakfast regularly, however 20-30% children skipped breakfast. The MyBreakfast study showed that 17.7% of the children consumed ready-to-eat cereal (RTEC) at breakfast, while among non-RTEC consumers, bread (44.2%), eggs (31.8%) and nasi lemak (23.9%) were the most common foods consumed.
RTEC was the major contributor of whole grain (68.6%), followed by hot cereal (18.6%), biscuits (8.7%) and bread (1.8%). In the SEANUTS Malaysia, among children aged 7 to 9 years, 13.4% and 9.5% met the MDG for fruits and vegetables while among children aged 10 to 12 years, only 19.6% and 16.1%, respectively met the MDG for fruits and vegetables. For the milk group, only 5.5% , 7 to 9 year olds and 3.7% 10 to 12 year olds met the MDG for milk/dairy products per day.