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Systematic review of the efficacy and effectiveness of complementary feeding interventions in developing countries


Complementary feeding interventions are usually targeted at the age range of 6–24 months,which is the time of peak incidence of growth faltering, micronutrient deficiencies and infectious illnesses in developing countries. After 2 years of age, it is much more difficult to reverse the
effects of malnutrition on stunting, and some of the functional deficits may be permanent. Therefore, interventions that are effective at reducing malnutrition during this vulnerable period should be a high priority. Although several types of interventions can be targeted to this age range (e.g. micronutrient supplementation), a food-based, comprehensive approach may be more effective and sustainable than programmes targeting individual nutrient deficiencies. For this review, a broad definition of ‘complementary feeding interventions’ is used so as to capture the full range of strategies that can be used.


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Author / Editor:

Kathryn G. Dewey and Seth Adu-Afarwuah

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University of California, Davis, California, USA

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