Accepted 8th March, 2020.
Nutrient related deficiency diseases and micronutrient deficiencies which can result to intrauterine growth retardation are manifested. Approximately 200 million women become pregnant each year in developing countries and many of these women suffer from ongoing nutritional deficiencies. In Kenya, malnutrition primarily affects pregnant and lactating women and children under five years of age, and significantly contributes to their morbidity and mortality. Kenya’s high rates of under nutrition among WRA are particularly due to insufficient awareness and knowledge on nutritionally adequate diets among other causes. Nutrition education during pregnancy can improve dietary intake. This study sought to determine nutrition knowledge and practices on dietary intake and their associations before and after a psycho-educational nutrition initiative among pregnant women in Migori County. A prospective cohort study design was used and simple random sampling was used to obtain a sample of 150 pregnant women from three sub-county hospitals purposively selected for study. Pregnant women of GA ≤26 weeks were recruited and enrolled into psycho-educational nutrition intervention study. Data was collected by a nutrition knowledge and practices questionnaire. Data was collected at baseline and after intervention for each woman and analyzed by SPSS. Data was summarized by descriptive and relationships between variables was tested by Chi square. Findings showed that the pregnant women Nutrition education had positive significant associations with nutrition knowledge and practices. The study found significant effects of nutrition knowledge from the psycho-educational initiative on dietary intake. The study concludes that nutrition education can be used to improve behaviours and dietary practices of pregnant women. The finding is important to central and county governments, civil society, intergovernmental agencies, research groups, business enterprises and community under study.
Keywords: Nutrition Knowledge, Dietary Practices and Attitudes, Pregnant Women