Changing pattern of Pediatric Obesity in India: Association with Commercial Baby Food Consumption

Shreyans Rai, IIPS
Sayeed Unisa, international Institute for Population Sciences

Child’s health status in the early days of their life has much impact on their growth and other functioning, which is affected due to obesity. An obese child has increased the risk of developing various non-communicable and degenerative diseases. The objective is to examine the impact of baby food consumption on overweight or obesity among children in 6 to 23 months, using NFHS-4 (2015- 16). This study investigates using statistical techniques like Propensity Score Matching and Logistic Regression. There has been a rise of about 33% in the proportion of overweight or obese children in the last decade. Findings from the analysis corroborate a positive association between commercial baby food like ceralac and overweight or obesity among younger children. Logistic regression shows a positive association (OR: 1.3) of commercial baby food on obesity among younger children. Also, findings from Propensity Score Matching show a 10 percent more probability of being overweight or obese for children consuming it on an average. Gender differentials were observed in the consumption of baby food. Girls had lower odds of being fed baby food. The adjusted odds and propensity score matching test confirmed the increase in overweight or obesity in children who consumed baby food.

Keywords: Children and youth, Policy evaluation, Comparative methods, Health and morbidity

See extended abstract.

  Presented in Session P19.