Impact of WIFS with and without intensive health education on weight change in adolescent anemic school girls of Delhi: a comparative study

Monika Singh, O. P. Rajoura, H. A. Raghavemdra


Background: Iron deficiency anemia is a public health alarm in developing countries. Anemia is an indicator of both poor health and poor nutrition. It has been observed that iron deficiency anemia in children and adolescent leads to growth delay. Weekly iron folic acid (WIFS) with health education can significantly reduce prevalence of nutritional anemia and improve growth among adolescents is seen elsewhere in the World. To confirm these results in India, a study was conducted in Delhi to investigate the effect of WIFS and Health education on growth in adolescent school girls.

Methods: A school based intervention study was conducted in selected government schools of Delhi. Total of 210 adolescent school girls (11th standard) were included in the study, 106 in intervention group and 104 in control group. The intervention group was given weekly iron folic acid supplementation (WIFS) with health education once a month, while a control group was given only WIFS.

Results: A significant weight gain of 2.8 kg was seen in the intervention group, whereas girls in the control group showed 1.8 kg weight gain. The growth increment was greater in the intervention group than control group which was found to be statistically significant (p<0.01).

Conclusions: WIFS and health education is recommended for growth promotion among adolescent girls especially who are underweight. Additional programmatic research should be carried out for understanding of the WIFS with health education -growth relationships in adolescence.


Adolescent, Anemia, Weight, Iron folic acid, Health education

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