ASSESSMENT OF DIETARY PATTERN AND NUTRITIONAL STATUS OF PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS ATTENDING SOME VOLUNTARY AND COUNSELLING TEST (VCT) UNITS IN KADUNA METROPOLIS
This project is on assessment of dietary pattern and nutritional status of people living with hiv/aids attending some voluntary and counselling test (vct) units in kaduna metropolis. This study assessed the dietary pattern and nutritional status of People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) attending some voluntary and counseling test units in Kaduna metropolis.The studied subjects consisted of 74 adult patients infected with HIV between the ages of 18 and 60 years and 74 age-and-sexed-matched apparently healthy volunteers who were HIV negative as control group.A semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect information on the socio-economic and demographic characteristics of the subjects. Dietary diversity of the subjectsand control were assessed using food frequency questionnaire. Blood serum total protein, total cholesterol, HDL and LDL cholesterol were determined spectrophotometrically while serum zinc and iron were measured using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer. Result obtained shows that majority of patients (39.19%) were between 26 and 33years. A sizeable percentages of patients (33.78%) and control (52.7%) were overweight (BMI ≥ 25.00kg/m2), while some patients (25.68%) and control (37.93%) were under weight (BMI < 18.49kg/m2). A significantly (P<0.05) higher total protein was observed in patients compared to the control while significantly (P<0.05) lower levels of LDL-cholesterol and CD4 counts were recorded in HIV patients compared to the control. There was also significantly (P<0.05) lower levels of zinc and iron in HIV patients compared to the control. Good dietary diversity was observed in the HIV patients as their dietary pattern showed regular intake of energy and other food groups which may explain why more patients had good BMI contrary to the usually observed incidence of weight loss and wasting among PLWHIV. They also showed normal level of total cholesterol and HDL which implies low risk of atherosclerosis with just little proportion at risk as a result of high LDL levels. Normal zinc levels in the PLWHIV may explain the normal weight observed contrary to what is observed in HIV patients with frequent diarrhea as zinc is effective in the reduction of the incidence, severity and duration of diarrhea. The PLWHIV should be encouraged to maintain dietary diversification with adequate consumption of four or all the food groups. Also, attention should be given to other causes of death in PLWHA such as cardiovascular diseases and overweight.
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