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Between malnutrition and obesity: the FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP and WHO report

In 2017, 821 million people worldwide (about 1 in 9) were hungry, while 672 million (about 1 in 8) were obese. Two extreme data highlighted by the new joint report published in September 2018 by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), United Nations Children's Fund ( Unicef), World Food Program (WFP) and World Health Organization (WHO).

The document, entitled "The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2018. Building the climate resilience for food security and nutrition", highlights the weight of food availability and proper nutrition as risk factors for health in the world, showing consequences very variable (undernutrition conditions on the one hand and overweight / obesity on the other) but still relevant. The document concerns the monitoring of the "Zero Hunger" objective 2 of the agenda for the United Nations for Sustainable Development, which aims to end hunger and all forms of malnutrition by 2030 and promote food security.

The report also notes progress on six indicators adopted by the World Health Assembly as indicators of the state of global nutrition. The data, updated to 2017, indicate a particularly serious picture in pediatric age: globally 150.8 million children under 5 years of age (22.2%) have undergone a growth arrest due to malnutrition, 50.5 million (7.5%) are underweight. Moreover, 38.3 million children under 5 years of age (5.6%) are overweight. Furthermore, the percentage of children under 6 months with exclusive breastfeeding and high (32.8%) is low (40.7%) that of women of childbearing age with anemia. This situation lays the foundations for the development of chronic non-communicable diseases, with their burden of morbidity and mortality during the life of people. Finally, the report warns about the important role of climate change on food availability and food security. He concludes by recalling the need for interventions to guarantee access to food and stop malnutrition, with health policies particularly attentive to the most vulnerable groups (infants, children, adolescent girls and women). Read the document "FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP and WHO. 2018. The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2018. Building climate resilience for food security and nutrition "(pdf 21.6 Mb).