National nutrition day is commemorated every January 25. Commemoration of national nutrition day is an effort to increase awareness of the importance of fulfilling nutrition for life. Nutritional problems such as stunting are the main problems that occur in Indonesia. Based on Nutritional Status Monitoring (PSG) data for the last three years, stunting has the highest prevalence compared to other nutritional problems. The prevalence of stunting has increased from 2016, namely 27.5% to 29.6% in 2017. In Indonesia, currently it is estimated that 37.2% of children aged 0-59 months or around 9 million children are stunted, which continues until school age 6-18 years.
Stunting is a condition in which a child has a height that is less than their age. This condition is measured by a length or height that is more than minus two standard deviations median of the WHO child growth standard. Stunting in children includes chronic nutritional problems caused by many factors, such as socioeconomic conditions, maternal nutrition during pregnancy, illness, and lack of nutritional intake in infants.
Children who are stunted, at a later date in life, will have difficulty achieving physical development. The development of his brain cannot be optimal, which causes his mental and learning abilities to be not optimal, and he has poor learning achievement. In the long term, children who are stunted, in adulthood, tend to be obese, and have the opportunity to suffer from non-communicable diseases (PTM), such as hypertension, diabetes, cancer, etc.
Apart from height that is not appropriate for their age, another symptom of stunting is the presence of body proportions that tend to be normal, but the child looks younger, has a small body and is low in weight for his age, and experiences delayed bone growth.
Prevention of stunting can be done by fulfilling adequate nutritional needs for mothers during pregnancy, providing exclusive breastfeeding at least until the age of 6 months, and after the age of 6 months being given complementary foods (solids) in terms of quantity and quality, then monitoring the growth and development of children, increasing access to clean water and sanitation facilities, and maintaining a clean environment.
Fulfilling adequate nutrition for pregnant women and children is the main key to avoiding stunting in children. Prevention efforts are better done early on for a healthy future for the baby.
Medical Affairs (FH)
Buletin Jendela Data dan Infomasi kesehatan. 2018. Situasi Balita Pendek (Stunting) di Indonesia.
Prawirohartono E P, dan Hanifah R N. 2019. Kenali Penyebab Stunting Anak. RSUP Dr. Sardjito Yogyakarta
Sutarto.2018. Stunting: Faktor Resiko dan Pencegahannya.