SCALLING Up Nutrition (SUN-FUND) has estimated that about 41 percent of children under the age of five in the country are under malnourished.
Eastern Province Nutrition Support Coordinator Xavier Pwete said yesterday that most breast feeding mothers do not exclusively breast feed their children.
He said that the 61 percent of breastfeeding their babies in Zambia were not good enough.
Mr Pwete said that there was need for mothers to exclusively breastfeed their children in order for them to grow up healthy and have higher chances of survival.
“Some people say that breastfeeding a baby within the first hour of birth is not good, but breast milk during the first hour is good and helps the growth of the baby,”Mr Pwete said.
He said that some mothers prefer to introduce their children to supplement foods such as porridge within the period of exclusive breastfeeding of six months which was not good.
Mr Pwete has also encouraged families to utilised the locally grown foods to feed their children under the age of five to reduce stunted growth.
“Being short is not problem but being short, some people are short because they never received adequate nutrition during their growing days, he said.
He says that families should take for instance soya beans to make sausages locally which have a high value of nutrition.
Mr Pwete said that his office in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, Mother and Child Development, Ministry of Local Government and Housing, Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Education are working in collaboration to see how good nutrition can be appreciated by many people.