Household animal ownership is associated with infant animal source food consumption in Bangladesh

Monica M. Pasqualino, Saijuddin Shaikh, Md Tanvir Islam, Shahnaj Parvin, Hasmot Ali, John McGready, Alain B. Labrique, Md Iqbal Hossain, Amanda C. Palmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Context-specific research is needed on the relationship between household animal production and nutrition outcomes to inform programmes intervening in small-scale animal production. We examined associations between household animal/fishpond ownership and animal source food (ASF) consumption among 6- to 12-month-old infants enroled in the control arm of a cluster-randomised controlled trial in rural Bangladesh. We measured ASF consumption using a 7-day food frequency questionnaire at 6, 9 and 12 months and assessed household animal/fishpond ownership at 12 months. We developed negative binomial regression models with random intercepts for infant and cluster, controlling for infant age and sex, maternal age, socioeconomic status and season. Models were stratified by a dichotomised maternal decision-making score. Compared with infants in households without each animal type, those with 4–10 and ≥11 poultry consumed eggs 1.3 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.1, 1.6) and 1.6 (95% CI: 1.3, 2.0) times more, respectively; 2–3 and ≥4 dairy-producing animals consumed dairy 1.9 (95% CI: 1.3, 2.7) and 2.0 (95% CI: 1.3, 3.1) times more, respectively; and ≥12 meat-producing animals consumed meat 1.4 (95% CI: 1.0, 1.8) times more. It was unclear whether there was an association between fishpond ownership and fish consumption. Our results did not suggest that maternal decision-making power was a modifier in the relationship between animal/fishpond ownership and ASF consumption. In this South Asian context, strategies intervening in household animal production may increase infant consumption of eggs, dairy and meat, but not necessarily fish. Research is needed on the role of market access and other dimensions of women's empowerment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere13495
JournalMaternal and Child Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2023


  • South Asia
  • complementary feeding
  • diet
  • empowerment
  • gender
  • infant and child nutrition
  • livestock

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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