Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example

Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example

Introduction

Generally, nutrition is a study of food nutrients and how they are used in the body to impart health and disease. Nutritionists employ various ideologies, including genetics, biology, and biochemistry, to understand how nutrients affect humans. However, nutrition is sometimes used to refer to a nourishing substance or food or the process of taking in food for purposes of growth, metabolism, and repair. In pediatrics, nutrition involves dietary considerations for infants and children since they cannot make informed nutritional choices.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example
Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example 1

Dietary considerations are crucial for infants’ and children’s growth and development. Significantly, this topic is interesting since nutrition is fundamental for infants’ and children’s present and future health. Equally, knowledge on adequate nutrition allows parents to make good nutritional choices for their kids throughout childhood to protect them from illnesses and nutrition-related conditions. Notably, childhood nutrition preferences determine dietary intake and behaviors that persist throughout an individual’s life.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Purpose

The paper aims to conduct literature research on nutrition in infants and children. Through the research, it is vital to determine what constitutes adequate nutrition and poor nutrition especially within pediatrics. It is also integral to examine the association between good nutrition and growth and development, particularly brain development, bone, and muscle mass acquisition. Lastly, the paper aims to understand the impact of poor nutrition on health and illness.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

For these reasons, the paper discusses the importance of adequate nutrition in infants and children. Significantly, nutrition is a crucial topic for nurses as it allows them to understand the evidence-based information on healthy eating. Besides, it will enable nurses to pass the knowledge to their patients to maintain healthy body weight and reduce risks of chronic diseases. This underscores the role of pediatric nurses in facilitating better nutrition of their patients through patient education. Lastly, the paper outlines the role of nurse nutritionists in pediatric nutrition, particularly in training first-time parents on pediatric nutrition. To sum it up, the purpose of this exposition is to conduct literature research on pediatric nutrition, discuss the importance of adequate nutrition in infants and children, and outline the role of nurse nutritionists in pediatric nutrition.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Importance of Pediatric Nutrition

Nutrition plays a significant role in the lives of infants and children. Researchers have studied pediatric nutrition with significant advancements in various spheres, including its relation to growth and development, illness and diseases, and the crucial nutritional components for infants and children. Pediatric nutrition involves properly maintaining a comprehensive diet, which constitutes vital nutrients and adequate calories to promote physiologic requirements and childhood growth. These findings assign value to nutrition’s importance, particularly for infants and children up to 18 years.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

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Growth and Development 

There is evidence that adequate nutrition is crucial for optimal intellectual performance in infants and children. Nutrients provide the building blocks of the brain’s neurotransmitters crucial to hormone uptake, DNA synthesis, and cell proliferation (Cusick & Georgieff, 2016). These are crucial constituents of brain enzymes and eventual composition. Brain development is vulnerable to poor nutrition since it develops faster than other body organs during the early years of life. Therefore, adequate nutrition is crucial in childhood.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Although all nutrients are vital for brain growth and function, studies have focused on the impact of individual micronutrients on the development of the brain. For instance, proteins, carbohydrates, iron, and vitamin B6 are crucial for neurogenesis and myelination (Cusick & Georgieff, 2016). Equally, protein, iron, iodine, and copper are crucial for neurotransmitter concentration, receptors, and reuptake. Lastly, glucose, choline, iodine, and copper are crucial for the electrical efficiency of the brain. Because of the correlation of nutrients and brain growth and development, malnourished children have been associated with impaired intellectual performance, limiting better learning and other executive functions.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Adequate nutrition contributes to the growth and development of children, enabling them to reach their potential and capacity for physical work. Adequate nutrition is a crucial determinant of health and wellbeing in infants and children (Proia et al., 2021).  Adequate nutrition is aid strong bone and muscles growth and development.  However, lack of adequate nutrition can lead to fetal growth restriction,  stunting, a situation in which an infant or child is shorter than potential height.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Nutrition is also essential for bone and muscle health. Proia et al. (2021) studied, in part, the impact of diet on bone health and found that calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D intake are beneficial to musculoskeletal health, especially to bone and muscle development. Besides, these nutrients prevent bone loss in children at various points in their life course. A study by Cravelly et al. (2017) affirms that protein intake before puberty in boys increases bone mass acquisition. Therefore, dietary protein is also crucial in accumulating bone and muscle mass during growth.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Health and Illness

Poor nutrition increases the risks of poor health, morbidity, and mortality in children. According to the World Health Organization, malnutrition is the most crucial deficiency resulting from poor nutrition, especially undernutrition or overnutrition (WHO, 2021). Acute malnutrition associated with inadequate protein or energy uptake is responsible for about one-third of pediatric mortality of children below five years. This is because; the condition causes impairment of organ systems and affects cellular immunity. Loss of cellular immunity leaves the body susceptible to various invasive infections, including gastrointestinal, septicemia, and urinary infections.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

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During the critical stages of an infant’s growth, improper development outcomes, or illnesses, lack of nutrition occurs. Vitamin A and zinc deficiency in infants and children impair the body’s immune system (Branca et al., 2015). An impaired immune system increases the chances of death from common infections, including diarrhea, malaria, and pneumonia. Moreover, illnesses and conditions such as anemia or scurvy from iron and vitamin C deficiencies, respectively, may develop. Together, these vitamin deficiencies and improper development impair optimal growth and adequate health in children.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Poor nutrition is also associated with wasting, a low weight-for-height. Wasting indicates severe and recent weight loss partly due to recurrent or chronic undernutrition (Dipasquale, Cucinotta & Romano, 2020). Wasting increases the risk of death since the body lacks adequate energy to support various physiological processes and degenerative diseases (Branca et al., 2015). Wasted children tend to be thin and have weak immunity leaving them vulnerable to diseases. Therefore, poor nutrition increases mortality in children.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Overnutrition is also associated with poor health outcomes. Overnutrition, especially of sugars and fats with few nutrients, is associated with overweight and obesity in children and adolescents (Kim, J., & Lim, 2019). Besides, overnutrition and unbalanced nutrient intake are associated with diet-related disorders and non-communicable diseases such as diabetes (insulin resistance), dyslipidemia, and high blood pressure among adolescents. Establishing poor eating habits affects children through adolescents, further predisposing them to poor health and diseases. These conditio(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)ns contribute to increased morbidity and mortality in infants and children.

Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example
Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example 2

Role of Pediatric Nurse Nutritionist

Pediatric nutritionists are specialized in providing comprehensive dietary needs for infants and children. Pediatric nutritionists plan nutrition programs for first-time parents, educating them and their families on developing dietary plans at each stage of a child’s development. Moreover, pediatric nutritionists educate parents on how to achieve a nutritious diet from locally available foods. Lastly, pediatric nutritionists established programs to help families respond to diet-related health issues like diabetes and obesity. For these reasons, they play a crucial role in supporting initiatives to attain adequate child nutrition across communities to mitigate adverse health outcomes.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Conclusion

Nutrition is a study of food nutrients and how they are used in the body to impart health and disease. However, nutrition can also refer to the nourishing substance or food. Equally, nutrition refers to the process of taking food. In pediatric nursing, nutrition involves dietary considerations for infants and children since they cannon make their own informed choices.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Dietary considerations are crucial for infants’ and children’s growth and development. Nutrition is also an essential determinant of a child’s present and future health. Adequate nutrition contributes to good health, optimal growth, and development. Conversely, poor nutrition contributes to poor health and illnesses.(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

Adequate nutrition is associated with optimal brain functioning, leading to high intellectual performance in children. Besides, adequate nutrition is associated with optimal bone and muscle mass acquisition, leading to appropriate musculoskeletal health.  Poor nutrition is associated with adverse health outcomes such as malnutrition, wasting, overweight, obesity, and the associated non-communicable diseases. For these reasons, pediatric dieticians play crucial roles in planning nutrition for parents and educating them on how to determine and respond to the negative impacts of nutrition (Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example)

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References

Branca, F., Piwoz, E., Schultink, W., & Sullivan, L. M. (2015). Nutrition and health in women, children, and adolescent girls. BMJ351(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example). https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h4173

Chevalley, T., Bonjour, J. P., Audet, M. C., Merminod, F., van Rietbergen, B., Rizzoli, R., & Ferrari, S. (2017). Prepubertal impact of protein intake and physical activity on weight-bearing peak bone mass and strength in males. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism102(1), 157-166(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example). https://doi.org/10.1210/jc.2016-2449

Cusick, S. E., & Georgieff, M. K. (2016). The role of nutrition in brain development: the golden opportunity of the “first 1000 days”. The Journal of Pediatrics175, 16-21. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2016.05.013

Dipasquale, V., Cucinotta, U., & Romano, C. (2020). Acute malnutrition in children: Pathophysiology, clinical effects and treatment. Nutrients12(8), 2413. https://dx.doi.org/10.3390%2Fnu12082413

Kim, J., & Lim, H. (2019). Nutritional management in childhood obesity. Journal of Obesity & Metabolic Syndrome28(4), 225. https://dx.doi.org/10.7570%2Fjomes.2019.28.4.225

Proia, P., Amato, A., Drid, P., Korovljev, D., Vasto, S., & Baldassano, S. (2021). The Impact of Diet and Physical Activity on Bone Health in Children and Adolescents. Frontiers in Endocrinology12(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example). https://doi.org/10.3389/fendo.2021.704647

Robinson, S. M. (2015). Infant nutrition and lifelong health: current perspectives and future challenges. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease6(5), 384-389. https://dx.doi.org/10.1017%2FS2040174415001257

The World Health Organization. (June 2021). Malnutrition(Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example). Retrieve 21 November from, https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/malnutrition

Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example
Pediatric Nutrition Comprehensive Nursing Paper Example 3

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