Malnutrition is a health crisis affecting millions around the world — and one becoming more urgent as the pandemic continues. Its impact is not just represented in health statistics; it is felt in people’s daily lives and the choices they make.

During an ICFJ webinar entitled The Urgency of Investing in Malnutrition Amid the Pandemic, Martha Nyagaya, the Kenya country director of Nutrition International, discussed the heightened impact of malnutrition on women and girls, and those living in poverty, the effects of COVID-19 on food security, and the importance of nutrition interventions.

Highlighting several of many related issues, such as stuntingchronic hunger and wasting, Nyagaya explained that malnutrition is truly global in nature.

“The world has the triple burden of malnutrition,” she said, referring to the confluence of undernutrition, obesity and food insecurity. “Whichever way you look at the world, malnutrition affects all countries.”



Below is important background and information on malnutrition that can help journalists bolster their reporting on the issue.

The broader context

Malnutrition has a variety of interrelated, contributing factors, from poverty and food insecurity, to social and cultural norms. More immediate causes include inadequate dietary intake or disease, according to Nyagaya.

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by Emma Manring and Taylor Dibbert, International Journalists’ Network

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