Acceptability of Plumpy’nut (A Peanut-Based Ready- To -Use Therapeutic Food) among Malnourished Children in Selected Rehabilitation Centres in Accra Metropolis


Background: The efficacy of Plumpy’nuts (PPN) has been technically and medically documented as an appropriate product for the treatment of severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in children. SAM is a chief killer of children < 5 years, responsible for 1 million deaths yearly. Children with SAM risk dying 9 times more than non-SAM children. Aim: To evaluate the acceptability of PPN, “a ready-to-use therapeutic food” among malnourished children in selected rehabilitation centers in the Accra Metropolis. Method: A cross-sectional study based on 100 subjects (child-caregiver pair) with the children 6-59 months of age, were chosen using total enumeration. Semi-structured questionnaire was employed to gather data on caregiver and child acceptability of PPN. Anthropometric measurements (weight, length and MUAC) of children were assessed. Associations between acceptability and PPN’s organoleptic properties and socio-demographic variables were analyzed. Results: Key findings showed PPN acceptability of 75% to 92% by caregivers towards the various organoleptic properties and 93% tolerability by children. The mean age of the children was 13 months. The mean MUAC, weight and height of the children after intake of plumpy’nut was 11.75±0.86, 6.65±1.11 and 69.46±5.92 respectively representing a significant improvement from 11.02±0.62, 5.86±1.11 and 67.89±5.94 respectively before plumpy’nut intervention. The association between the children’s PPN acceptability and the children’s current nutritional status was woefully insignificant (p-value > 0.05). There were no significant associations between acceptability and any socio-demographic variables assessed (p-value > 0.05). Conclusion: There was high acceptability of plumpy’nuts which is associated with its organoleptic properties as well as its beneficial effect on nutritional status. The educational status of the caregivers as well as the health education/information provided by health workers pertaining to plumpy’nut could also account for its acceptability. Appropriate health education coupled with quality standards of manufactured plumy’nuts is paramount to its acceptability



Plumpy’nut (A Peanut-Based Ready- To -Use Therapeutic Food), Rehabilitation Centres, Accra Metropolis, severe acute malnutrition (SAM)