Stunting, mother’s education, environmental factors, structural correlates


Aim: In spite of India's healthy economic growth during the last two decades, about 40 percent of all children in India today are stunted. Though the problem has received widespread attention in the public health literature on stunting in India, very few studies have attempted to explicitly account for the progressive stages of stunting among children. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects women’s education on various levels of stunting among Indian children. The study attempted to assess the effects of women’s characteristics such as age at motherhood on four levels of stunting, no stunting, and mild, moderate and severe.

Methods: Data from the National Family Health Survey (2005-2006) was used to test three separate models of stunting with selected determinants of women’s capabilities and variables controlling for several environmental factors related to stunting. Generalized ordinal regression method was employed to analyze the data.

Results: Factors such as availability of diverse sources of water, increases in mother’s level of education, age at first birth, wealth status and urban residence significantly reduced the odds of being stunted.

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