The Association Between the WASH and Clean Cooking Fuel Access and the Nutritional Well-Being of Adolescents in China

Yiqi Zhu, Shiyou Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Safe water, sanitation, and hygiene facilities (WASH) interventions and access to clean cooking fuels are widely recognized as important public health interventions to reduce environmental risk factors of undernutrition. However, limited evidence has been found associating access to WASH and clean cooking fuels with improved nutritional well-being and elucidating the mechanism behind the impact of those interventions. This paper aims to examine the relationship between WASH and clean fuel access and adolescence nutritional well-being and further to explore time spent on household chores, a socioeconomic mechanism that mediates the relationship between access to WASH and clean cooking fuels and the nutritional well-being of adolescents. Methods: This study uses nationally representative data of the 2010 Chinese Family Panel Study, with a subsample of 3044 complete cases of adolescents aged from 10 to 16 from 2641 families in 589 communities. Multilevel logistic regressions were used to test the association between the count of WASH and clean fuel access and whether an adolescent is underweight or stunted. We further tested the mediation effects of time spent on the doing household chores. Results: Access to a single type of facilities is not significantly associated with the probability of stunting or underweight of adolescents. However, access to more than two types of access facilities significantly reduced the odds of stunting. We also found a partial mediation effects between the count of WASH and clean fuel access and the probability of being stunted. Conclusion: WASH and clean fuel access has significant associations with the probability of being stunted and disproportionally affects adolescent girls. Improving access to single type of facilities is not sufficient to prevent stunting. Improved water, improved sanitation, improved waste management, and access to clean fuels and electricity interplayed with each other and collectively reduced the environmental risk factors and improved the well-being of people in the community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-107
Number of pages11
JournalGlobal Social Welfare
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • China
  • Clean cooking fuels
  • Nutritional well-being
  • WASH

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

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