Developing countries women (of child bearing age) are vulnerable to micronutrient deficiencies which can have major adverse health consequences. The aim of this study was to improve dietary quality of women of childbearing age in rural Kenya using linear programming (Optifood) LP. The study was conducted in 2008 (March/ April) at Mbooni division, Makueni district, Kenya. A total of 210 women of child bearing age (15-49 years), with children 2-5 years old were recruited for the study. Data were collected to formulate FBR was generated, composed and evaluated using a four based approach of LP. Mbooni women do not have sufficient fat, calcium, folate and iron in their local diets to achieve nutrient requirements. Sukuma wiki and cowpea leaves (vitamin A dark green leafy vegetables), maize flour cooked (starchy staple), milk cow (dairy products), avocado (and other fruits) and added fat would improve the diets nutrient levels (worst-case scenario nutrient levels) in existing food pattern. The LP was successfully used to generate and formulate food based recommendation for rural women of Kenya, who have limited food choices. Limited nutrient, were identified needing food based approaches for diets to reach required nutrient levels.
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RUFORUM Working document series
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