Key determinants of malnutrition of children under five years of age in Rwanda: Simultaneous measurement of three anthropometric indices

Faustin Habyarimana


Malnutrition of children is a serious problem to the public health, most especially in developing countries. Based on Rwanda Demographic and Health Survey Data, the joint model of a multivariate generalized linear mixed model is used to simultaneously identify the determinants of malnutrition of children under five years of age in Rwanda using height-for-age, weight-for-age and weight-for-height. Each anthropometric index has been categorized as malnourished (Z-score value <-2.0) and nourished (Z-score value . The study found that the age of the child, gender of the child, birth weights, mother’s knowledge of nutrition, birth order, incidence of recent fever, multiple births, education level of the mother, age of the mother at childbirth, body mass index, prevalence of anemia, province, source of drinking water and wealth quintiles are the key determinants of malnutrition of children under five years of age in Rwanda. A positive correlation between stunting and underweight and wasting and underweight was found. Therefore this study suggests that when eradicating malnutrition of children under five years of age, all three types of malnutrition should be corrected. It also suggests strengthening the policy on educating people in planning the number of children born to them


Stunting, Underweight, Wasting, multivariate, Millennium Development Goals, Joint modelling.

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ISSN 2308-7854 (online); ISSN 0850-5780 (print)

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