Table 1 Distribution (N, %) of children by selected characteristics and consumption of specific food items, food groups, and diversified dietary intake in the last 24 h, NFHS-4, India 2015–16

From: Socio-economic patterning of food consumption and dietary diversity among Indian children: evidence from NFHS-4

Selected characteristics Number Percenta
Age of child (months)   
 6–11 25,218 34.1
 12–23 48,820 65.9
Sex of the child   
 Male 38,740 52.3
 Female 35,298 47.7
Birth order   
 1 28,326 38.3
 2 24,612 33.2
 3 11,267 15.2
 4+ 9,833 13.3
Mother’s educationb   
 No education 20,265 27.4
 Primary complete 10,019 13.5
 Secondary complete 35,087 47.4
 High school and above 8,667 11.7
Household wealthc   
 Poorest 18,070 24.4
 Poorer 16,050 21.7
 Middle 15,127 20.4
 Richer 13,719 18.5
 Richest 11,072 15.0
Religiond   
 Hinduism 58,265 78.7
 Muslim 12,191 16.5
 Christian 1,550 2.1
 Others/No religion 2,032 2.8
Caste/Tribee   
 Scheduled caste 16,108 21.8
 Scheduled tribe 7,726 10.4
 Other backward class 32,593 44.0
 General 14,237 19.2
 Missing caste 3,375 4.6
Place of residence   
 Urban 20,804 28.2
 Rural 53,233 71.9
Consumption of specific food items   
 Juice 14,427 19.5
 Tinned powdered/Fresh milk 29,670 40.1
 Formula milk 7,699 10.4
 Fortified baby food 11,586 15.7
 Soup/Clear broth 12,137 16.4
 Other liquids 15,768 21.3
 Chicken, duck, or other birds 3,525 4.8
 Bread, noodles, other grains 46,549 62.9
 Potatoes, cassava, tubers 15,776 21.3
 Eggs 10,651 14.4
 Pumpkin, carrots, squash 14,573 19.7
 Dark green leafy vegetables 21,045 28.4
 Mangoes, papayas, Vit A fruits 13,651 18.4
 Any other fruits 17,652 23.9
 Liver, heart, other organ meat 3,809 5.2
 Fish, shellfish 3,526 4.8
 Beans, peas, or lentils 9,825 13.3
 Cheese, yogurt, other milk products 6,999 9.5
 Other solid/Semi-solid food 15,625 21.1
 Any other meat 2,862 3.9
 Yogurt 7,007 9.5
Specific food groups   
 Grains, roots and tubers 54,420 73.5
 Legumes and nuts 9,825 13.3
 Dairy products 40,841 55.3
 Flesh foods 7,370 10.0
 Eggs 10,652 14.4
 Vit A rich fruits and vegetables 21,135 28.6
 Other fruits and vegetables 27,128 36.7
Diversified dietary intake score (mean, 95% confidence interval)   2.26 (2.24–2.27)
Diversified dietary intake   
 Inadequate 56,740 76.8
 Adequate 17,112 23.2
  1. aPercent for age, sex, birth order, maternal education, household wealth, religion, caste, and place of residence was calculated based on N = 74,038; Percent for consumption of specific food item, food group, and diversity dietary intake was calculated based on N of 73,852–74,038, depending on the outcome (see Fig. 1)
  2. bEducation: No education (0 years of education), primary complete: (1–5 years of education), secondary complete (6–8 years of education), high school and above (9+ years of education)
  3. cHouseholds are given scores based on the number and kinds of consumer goods they own, ranging from a television to a bicycle or car, and housing characteristics such as source of drinking water, toilet facilities, and flooring materials. These scores are derived using principal component analysis. National wealth quintiles are compiled by assigning the household score to each usual (de jure) household member, ranking each person in the household population by their score, and then dividing the distribution into five equal categories, each with 20% of the population
  4. dOthers include Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Jewish, Zoroastrian
  5. eScheduled castes and scheduled tribes are identified by the Government of India as socially and economically backward and needing protection from social injustice and exploitation. Other backward class is a diverse collection of intermediate castes that were considered low in the traditional caste hierarchy but are clearly above scheduled castes. General are thus a default residual group that enjoys higher status in the caste hierarchy