SRP Nutrition Study

Nutritional status and growth pattern for children of low income group in North Kolkata

Under the supervision of two senior research scientists our own research team did a study on the nutritional status of children in the age group of 8 to 10 years. This involved three countries – Switzerland, Germany & India. Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) machines were installed from foreign countries for this project. The paper has already been published. Nutritional status and growth pattern have been assessed through BIA technique and Anthropometry.


  • To assess the Body Composition (BC) of primary school children of low income group at North Kolkata.
  • To find out the differences in BC of boys and girls, if any.
  • To determine the pattern of Growth of boy and girls with advancement of age.
  • To assess the Nutritional Status of these children.
  • Place : North Kolkata
  • Schools : 9 (Low income group families)
    Boys : 1, Girls : 1, Co-ed. : 7
  • Period of study:
    1st : Sep. 2000 – Jan. 2001 : Initial
    2nd : Feb. 2004 – May 2004 : Final
  • No. of children :
    Initial : 264 (Boys : 122, Girls : 142)
    Final : 159 (Boys : 69, Girls : 90)

Salient Findings

  • With advancement of age Boys & Girls gained similar Height, whereas, Girls gained more Weight than Boys.
  • Percentages of LBM, Water, Cell Solids, Bone Minerals and Body Density were more in Boys than Girls at lower as well at higher age.
  • Body Fat % was higher in Girls than Boys at lower as well as at higher age.


  • Girls showed better growth pattern than the boys.
  • With the advancement of age nutritional status of girls showed significant improvement whereas, for the boys it remained unchanged.
  • Possible explanation may be, though the energy and nutrients intake of these children are similar, but the boys are more active in outdoor activities, as such, their energy expenditure is more than the girls who are generally confined within the indoor activities like household jobs.

A slum in North Kolkata where most of the children live

Assessment of body composition through BIA

Clinical examination of the student