Physical Development and Health
Malnutrition among children is a major public health concern in low socioeconomic families. Low socioeconomic families contend with inadequate dietary consumption and frequent infectious diseases. Indeed, children prone to malnutrition are susceptible to infections and are less productive because their mental and physical development is affected due to intake of inadequate vitamins and nutrients. Therefore, socioeconomic status and nutrition are linked. Poverty and low level of education in low socioeconomic families are responsible for malnutrition in children.
Poverty is responsible for poor nutrition among children belonging to low socioeconomic groups. Poverty is common in low socioeconomic families because these families reside in same houses that their previous generations lived. As such, high prevalence of underweight is common among children living in single rooms and attached houses characterized by poor sanitary conditions (McInerney et al. 7). These families suffer due to inability to acquire sanitary services and treated water. This also causes repeated infectious diseases because their body’s immune system is weakened increasing vulnerability to infections. McInerney et al. reports that infections are diagnosed in children suffering from malnutrition. The association between malnutrition and infections is responsible for repeated illnesses and deteriorating nutritional status. Critical and specific interventions that are instituted by the government include supporting micronutrient supplementation, promoting the need to breast feed children to acquire the requisite vitamins and nutrients, and availing sanitary services and clean drinking water.
Low level of education is another factor responsible for under nutrition among children living in low socioeconomic families. According to Assari, education generates the appropriate knowledge that favorably affects the health and wellbeing of children. The number of malnourished children is high among low educated mothers compared to educated parents. Education is essential in informing mothers about the nutritional needs of children, as well as their physical and mental growth. Assari opines that low education level makes it difficult for parents to comprehend what constitutes an appropriate diet for good health. These mothers, thus, lack the necessary skills and motivation to make the soundest nutritional choice available to them. The government and nongovernmental entities are addressing low level education problem responsible for malnutrition through the provision of family nutrition guides. The guides are effective in informing families how to promote good and healthy eating habits.
I feel that children residing in low socioeconomic status are malnourished because they are not taking food rich in essential vitamins and nutrients. The inability to consume appropriate diets due to poverty and low education affects the academic learning ability and psychosocial behavior of children. According to Ronfani et al., malnutrition among children of low income families results in long-term neural problems in the brain which impacts a child’s ability to respond to emotions, stress, and learning disabilities. Ronfani et al. further reveal that malnourished children contend with delayed development of vision, motor, language, and social skills. This means that a child’s learning ability, attitude, and behavior are affected if they fail to consume healthful diets. I believe that ethnicity plays a role in the lack of accessibility to adequate nutrition because of income inequalities. People of color suffer from diet related diseases and recurrent infections because of meager incomes they earn (McInerney et al. 10). Therefore, people of color encounter more barriers when attempting to prevent, manage, and treat diet-related diseases.
The socioeconomic status of a family affects nutrition embodied in diet intakes. Children from low socioeconomic status are underweight and malnourished because of poverty and low level of education. Poverty-stricken families have inadequate access to good houses, sanitation services, and clean water to drink. The children in these facilities consistently suffer from diet related disease and infection as they are unable to consume required quantity of vitamins and nutrients. The elementary level of education of among parents is equally responsible for malnutrition because they are not versed with knowledge regarding the appropriate diets that their families should consume. Nevertheless, government sponsored programs relating to breastfeeding, micronutrient supplementation, and family nutrition guides are effective in tackling the ethnic-based malnutrition problem.
Assari, Shervin. “Educational Attainment and Exercise Frequency in American Women; Blacks’ Diminished Returns.” Women’s Health Bulletin, vol. 6, no. 3, 2019, e87413.
McInerney, Maria, Ilona, Csizmadi, Christine, Friedenreich, Francisco, Uribe, Alberto, Nettel-Aguirre, Lindsay, McLaren, Melissa, Potestio, Beverly, Sandalack, and Gavin, McCormack. ”Associations Between The Neighbourhood Food Environment, Neighbourhood Socioeconomic Status, And Diet Quality: An Observational Study”. BMC Public Health, vol. 16, no. 984, 2016, pp. 1-15.
Ronfani, Luca, Liza, Brumatti, Marika, Mariuz, Veronica, Tognin, Maura, Bin, Valentina, Ferluga, Alessandra, Knowles, Marcella, Montico, and Fabio, Barbone. “The Complex Interaction between Home Environment, Socioeconomic Status, Maternal IQ and Early Child Neurocognitive Development: A Multivariate Analysis of Data Collected in a Newborn Cohort Study”. Plos ONE, vol. 10, no. 5, 2015, e0127052.