Gloria Y. Kobati; Anna Lartey; Esi Colecraft; Grace S. Marquis
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Global Livestock CRSP, University of California- Davis
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Abstract: Information on the dietary intakes of non-pregnant, non-lactating (NPNL) Ghanaian mothers is lacking. A cross-sectional survey was undertaken to compare the dietary intakes of NPNL mothers living in the Coastal (n=79) and Northern Savannah (n=89) zones of Ghana. Data collection included an interviewer-administered socio-demographic questionnaire and a 12-hour weighed food record over one working and one non-working day. A food frequency questionnaire was administered to cover one week’s dietary intake, from which animal source food (ASF) diversity was determined. Results showed that cereal foods were consumed on a daily basis by all participants. Fish was the predominant ASF consumed by both groups of women. The diets of both groups of women did not meet their energy requirements and were low in some micronutrients, especially calcium. The overall quality of the diets was low for the northern women compared to that of the coastal women. About 68% of the northern women compared to 22% of the coastal women had low dietary diversity. Efforts to increase women’s access to quality foods all year round are needed to improve women’s nutrition.