A Scoping Review on Nutrition Challenges Among People Living With HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa

  •  Tafadzwa Dzinamarira    
  •  Gashema Pierre    
  •  Itai Chitungo    
  •  Michael Habtu    
  •  Rosemary Okova    


The connection between under-nutrition and HIV is bidirectional. It affects the quality of life, as well as the survival of affected people. While this is the case, there are various nutritional challenges, which are faced by people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWH), and which hamper the fight against the scourge. This study therefore sought to map literature on the nutritional challenges among PLWH in sub-Saharan Africa and guide future research in nutritional management to improve health outcomes for PLWH. A systematic search was done from the following sources: PubMed, the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, EBSCOhost (CINAHL and Academic Search Complete), Web of Science, and Google Scholar. In addition, information was obtained both from unpublished studies, which included book chapters, reference lists, theses and conference papers. Eleven (11) studies met the inclusion criteria, and were used for data extraction. The studies were based in different countries, which form part of the Sub Saharan Africa. One of the studies was carried out in Senegal, two studies were carried out in various West African countries, one study was carried out in Burkina Faso; one study was carried out in Ethiopia and one of the studies was carried out in different countries forming part of the Sub Saharan Africa. Two of the studies were carried out in Zambia, one in Zimbabwe, one in Cameroon, and one in Ghana. Most of the studies established the main nutrition challenge facing PLWH to be food insecurity. Based on the findings of the study, it can be concluded that some of the main nutrition challenges include food insecurity, lack of nutritional support among PLWH, late detection of HIV, huge cost of treating severe acute malnutrition, and lack of feeding supplementations.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.