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Engaging Local Ideas about Healthy Eating to Combat Protein-Energy Malnutrition in West Africa: The Centrality of Mothers to Kwashiorkor Prevention in Ghana

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Author: Honenberger, E Allison
Advisor: La Fleur, J. D. (James Daniel), 1969-
Committee Members: Allison, Lizabeth; Walkley, Susan
Issued Date: 2009-05-20
Subjects: Kwashiorkor
Protein Energy Malnutrition
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10288/1265
Description: Ghanaian infants and children are plagued by kwashiorkor, a common form of protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) throughout the developing world. Ghanaian mothers play a central role in the development, treatment, and prevention of kwashiorkor, where weaning practices are essential to causation and where these mothers act as the primary food preparers and an influential presence in the lives of at-risk youth. These women face many social, political, and economic obstacles as they attempt to feed their families and raise strong, healthy children. Foreigners desiring to join in the battle against kwashiorkor must engage these mothers, listen to their experiences and glean from their local wisdom the unique culture and context of kwashiorkor in Ghana. Outsiders can thus gain invaluable perspective and direction for designing sustainable and effective public health campaigns. By hearing the voices of those who daily live with the reality of kwashiorkor and forming partnerships with them to combat the injustice of malnutrition, international aid workers can better help to reduce the prevalence of kwashiorkor in Ghana.
Degree: Bachelors of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies

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