Individual, household, programme and community effects on childhood malnutrition in rural India

S. Rajaram, Lisa K. Zottarelli, T. S. Sunil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The children living in rural areas of India disproportionately suffer from malnutrition compared with their urban counterparts. The present article analyses the individual, household, community and programme factors on nutritional status of children in rural India. Additionally, we consider the random variances at village and state levels after introducing various observed individual-, household- and programme-level characteristics in the model. A multilevel model is conducted using data from the National Family and Health Survey 2. The results show that maternal characteristics, such as socio-economic and behavioural factors, are more influential in determining childhood nutritional status than the prevalence of programme factors. Also, it was found that individual factors show evidence of state- and village-level clustering of malnutrition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-140
Number of pages12
JournalMaternal and Child Nutrition
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Children
  • India
  • Malnutrition
  • Programme components
  • Rural

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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