Role of Diet and Nutritional Supplements for Children with Cerebral Palsy


  • Thanaa S. Gamal Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Faculty of Home Economic, Al-Azhar University, Egypt
  • Thanaa A. Elkholy Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Faculty of Home Economic, Al-Azhar University, Egypt
  • Ensaf M. Yassen Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Faculty of Home Economic, Al-Azhar University, Egypt
  • Doaa M. EL-Sawy Department of Gastroenterology & Clinical nutrition Unit Faculty of Medicine Tanta University, Egypt


cerebral palsy, spastic diplegia, sweet potato, wheat germ


Background: The majority of children with cerebral palsy would experience feeding difficulties due to impairment of facial muscles that hampers a child’s ability to chew, suck, or swallow, thereby creating a high risk for undernourishment, malnutrition, failure to thrive, and digestive difficulties. Aim of work: Assessment of the effect of good nutrition and nutritional supplements on the general health
status for the children with cerebral palsy to improve their quality of life. Patients and Methods: Experimental, prospective controlled study survey was conducted through face-to-face interview with the researcher on (84) patients diagnosed as having cerebral palsy by history, clinical examination and investigations in the neurology and gastroenterology and clinical nutrition units, pediatric department, Tanta university hospital. Using valid and reliable scales and questionnaires, (demographic and socioeconomic characteristics), anthropometric measurements, the food frequency and 24hour recall questionnaires to evaluate the actual daily intake of nutrients. Results: The median of age of children in both groups (6.5-6.8) years with the range (1.4-14) years in both groups, more than half of children of both diet and SP mix groups were males (57.1% and 54.8%, respectively). Most of children in both
groups reported negative history of consanguinity by (90.5% for diet group and 92.9% of SP mix group). Medium social status prevailed over the participating patients with a percentage of (47.6%) in both groups. Type of CP (spastic diplegia), was presented in (57.1% -61.9%) in diet and SP mix groups respectively, level (5) of (GMFC) was presented in (40.5% in diet group and 47.6% of SP mix group).
According to (feeding time, stress on caregiver, history of respiratory illnesses, the rate of forming of subcutaneous fat) was improved in SP mix group higher than diet group. The well-nourished children increased from (28.6% to 83.3%) in diet group, and from (38.1% to 78.6) in SP mix group. According to frequency consumption of grilled fish, liver, white bread, honey, boiled meat, butter, cottage cheese, salad, cooked vegetables, orange, legumes, lentils& bean), was increased. Moreover, consumption from some drinks and foods, for example (tea, soda, canned juice, candy, chocolate & margarine) decreased for lack, after nutrition intervention in the two groups. Conclusion: dietary management and nutritional supplements can improve the quality of life of children with cerebral palsy.