Nigeria

Nigeria boys and girls

Project—National Food Consumption and Micronutrient Survey

Objective

To assess both food consumption patterns and micronutrient (vitamin and mineral) status among vulnerable populations, including young children, adolescent girls, and women of reproductive age.

Background

Data on the dietary intake and micronutrient status of key population groups in Nigeria is outdated; the most recent National Food Consumption and Micronutrient Survey (NFCMS) was done in 2001. That report showed significant malnutrition among young children, including high levels of anemia, vitamin A deficiency, stunting, wasting, and underweight.

The Government of Nigeria has multiple policies and programs to promote, protect, and support optimal nutrition. These include food fortification, biofortification, supplementation, infant and young child feeding policies, and programs to prevent non-communicable diseases. Yet data for children’s body measurements, anemia, and maternal child health are only collected about every 3 to 5 years and typically do not indicate micronutrient status other than assessing iron.

Activities

CDC’s International Micronutrient Malnutrition Prevention and Control (IMMPaCt) team provides technical assistance to design and carry out a micronutrient component of Nigeria’s NFCMS. This component will assess the status of vitamins A, B1, B2, B9 (folate), and B12 plus iron, iodine, and zinc as well as the prevalence of anemia and its associated risk factors. This survey will also collect information on children’s growth, diabetes, infectious diseases such as malaria, blood disorders such as sickle cell disease, and inflammation markers. In addition, the survey will assess household food samples for fortification—testing for iodine in salt, vitamin A in sugar and oils, and iron in wheat flour and semolina flour.

Potential Impact

This survey can provide high quality micronutrient and nutrition data to replace out-of-date information and fill a gap for never-collected data specific to vulnerable populations. Results can provide insight into the effectiveness of Nigeria’s current nutrition policies and programs. Decision makers and stakeholders can use this information to plan, monitor, and evaluate micronutrient and other nutrition interventions to improve nutrition and health in Nigeria.

Next Steps

CDC will continue to work with national leaders and partners to:

  • Provide technical assistance related to the planning, design, budget, and protocol development for the NFCMS.
  • Train survey team members on survey tools and all procedures of the micronutrient status component.
  • Build capacity for quality assurance for all laboratory tests.
  • Provide technical assistance on pilot testing, quality control, implementation, data cleaning, data analysis, and report writing.
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