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PostLabister on 2nd November 2012, 2:50 pm

Malnutrition is an important public health problem that is caused by a deficient or excess intake of nutrients in relations to requirements. Undernutrition (nutrient deficit) is the prevalent type of malnutrition in Tropical developing countries. At most risk are the poor and the disadvantaged particularly women of child reproductive age and young children. Undernutrition reduces immunity, physical activity and work productivity and in children; retards growth and psychological development. Undernourished women bear undernourished babies who often become stunted adults – thus perpetuating the undernutrition cycle.
Poor diets and diseases (particularly HIV/AIDS) are the immediate causes of undernutrition. Underlying causes are food insecurity, inadequate care of women and children, unhealthy living conditions and poor health services. In turn, these results resources, the low status women, environmental degradation and sometimes abnormal weather or conflict and violence.
The multicausal nature of malnutrition means many sectors (e.g. Economics, Agriculture, Women’s development, Health) are involved in its control. Health related strategies include distributing supplementary foods and nutrients, promoting breast feeding and complementary feeding, controlling diseases, checking food hygiene and safety, monitoring nutrition and child growth, providing maternal health services and nutritional education and facilitating community based programmes as these measures when implemented will help improve the nutritional status of the individual and the populace thereby making the individual nutritionally healthy and also serve as a criteria in test for physical health.

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