Women’s Decision-Making Autonomy and Their Nutritional Status in Ethiopia

Yibeltal T. Bayou, International Training and Education Center for Health (I-TECH), Ethiopia

The main objective of this research was to explore the relationship between women's empowerment and their nutritional status in Ethiopia. The study used nationally representative data from the 2005 Ethiopia DHS and employed logistic regression model for the multivariate analyses part. The findings indicate that more than 28% (rural=32.1%) of Ethiopian women were undernourished. Women with low decision-making autonomy are more likely (OR=1.54) to be undernourished than those with high decision-making autonomy. Women’s educational attainment, employment status, and household property possession are identified as the major pathways through which the decision-making autonomy of women affects their nutritional status. It is concluded that women’s decision-making autonomy is an important determinant of their nutritional status. There is a need to incorporate women empowerment as part of the national nutrition strategy and also further research is suggested to see the effects of the agro-ecological variations and cultural factors on women’s nutrition.

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Presented in Poster Session 6