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Undernutrition and the Nutrition Transition: Revising the undernutrition aspect of MDG I

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  • Mark Misselhorn

    (Georg-August-University Göttingen)

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    Abstract

    Since the publication of the new multi-country reference standard by WHO it is likely that future progress in the ght against undernutrition will be tracked by using this new standard. The use of the new reference standard will result in clear changes in the prevalence and composition of undernutrition. This paper argues that this opportunity should be used to use stunting or a Composite Index of Anthropometric Failure instead of underweight as the indicator to measure progress in the ght against hunger. All weight based anthropometric measures, such as underweight and wasting, suffer from the fact that due to changes in the nutritional composition of diets in developing countries there is going to be a secular reduction in those measures that does not coincide with real improvements in the health of the affected children. This bias could lead to wrong conclusions concerning the fulllment of the undernutrition aspect of MDG I.

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    File URL: http://www2.vwl.wiso.uni-goettingen.de/courant-papers/CRC-PEG_DP_35.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Courant Research Centre PEG in its series Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers with number 35.

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    Date of creation: 21 Jun 2010
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    Handle: RePEc:got:gotcrc:035

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    Related research

    Keywords: Nutrition transition; child undernutrition; Millennium Development Goals; composition of undernutrition;

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    Cited by:
    1. de Haen, Hartwig & Klasen, Stephan & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "What do we really know? Metrics for food insecurity and undernutrition," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 760-769.

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