Nutrient composition of a low-cost infant’s diet formulated from five locally available foodstuffs in northern Nigeria
In Northern Nigeria, malnutrition remains a major public health problem. This is because the predominant population of rural communities who are low income subsistence farmers cannot afford the commercial fortified infant’s food. This research was design to formulate and assess the nutrient composition of a cost effective infant’s diet from locally/readily available staple foodstuffs. This is aimed at improving the nutritional status of vulnerable infants and young Children in Northern Nigeria. Standard chemical methods were used to determine the nutrients and antinutrients of the formulated diet and the respective values compared to commonly used commercial complementary diet (as indicated by the manufacturer) in Nigerian market. The results showed that the crude protein of formulated diet was 16.29g/100g which is higher than 15g/100g for control (commercial weaning diet). The energy value of the formulated diet (416.7kcal/100g) is comparable to that of the commercial diet (410.0kcal/100g). The concentrations of zinc (31.0mg/100g) and iron (8.01mg/100g) in the formulated diet were significantly higher (p<0.05) than their corresponding values in the commercial diet. All the essential amino acids were present in the formulated diet. It can be concluded that proper selection and combination of local foodstuffs can provide a cheap and nutritionally rich weaning diet.
Keywords: Complementary diet, malnutrition, nutrition, local foodstuffs, food composition, antinutrient.