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An overview of the use of fermented foods for child feeding in Tanzania

Lorri, W., Svanberg, U.
Ecology of food and nutrition 1995 v.34 no.1 pp. 65-81
grain crops, diet, fermented foods, lactic acid, food intake, fermentation, child nutrition, weaning, food choices, protein energy malnutrition, children, Tanzania
About 50% of young children in Tanzania suffer from protein-energy malnutrition (PEM). Immediate causes of malnutrition related to food are low protein and energy content of the diet, inadequate frequency of feeding, the presence of antinutritional factors in the diet and a high prevalence of diarrhoea and other diseases. This paper discusses several merits of fermented foods which may significantly contribute to an improvement in the nutritional situation for young children. Use of fermented foods the child feeding is declining in Tanzania for various reasons, among them the time necessary for their preparation and the availability of cheaper, more easily prepared substitutes. This paper reports a survey of the present use of fermented foods in Tanzania and describes processing and preparation techniques, ingredients used and consumption patterns. Fermented foods are prepared from cereals, milk and cassava by different ethnic groups. This paper attempts to elucidate the potential effect of these fermented foods on nutrient quality and hygienic safety.