Malnutrition also called malnourishment is a condition resulting from eating a diet that contains either insufficient or too much of nutrients as a result of which health problems ensue. The nutrients involved are calories, carbohydrates, vitamins, proteins or minerals. Undernutrition during pregnancy, or before two years of age may cause permanent mental and physical development problems.
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Malnutrition – Types
Malnutrition refers to deficiencies, excesses or imbalances in a person’s intake of energy and/or nutrients.
Malnutrition covers 2 different categories of conditions that are given below
- Undernutrition – This category covers stunting (low height for age), wasting (low weight for height), underweight (low weight for age) and micronutrient deficiencies (lack of important minerals)
- Others – This category consists of overweight, obesity, diet-related non-communicable diseases (such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer)
Malnutrition – Negative Impacts
- Affects the productivity of the population
- Affects the country’s mortality rates
- Affects the survival rate of children
- Affects the learning capability of children, making them unproductive in their later life.
Malnutrition – Causes
Many families cannot afford or have access to
- Fresh fruits
The reason behind the rapid rise in obesity in adults and children is the cheaply available foods and drinks high in fat, sugar, and salt. Overweight problem is prevalent in poor as well as rich countries.
Malnutrition in India – 8 Important Facts
- As per the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), 14.5% of India’s population is undernourished.
- In the Global Hunger Index 2019 report, India is ranked abysmally low at 102nd position out of 117 countries.
- As per the report given by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the major contributing factor behind the death of children below 5 years of age in India, was malnutrition in children.
- As per UNICEF report, 38% of children younger than 5 years of age in India are stunted.
- Approximately 40% of children from Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, and Other Backward Classes are stunted.
- As per UNICEF report, India is at 10th spot among countries with the highest number of underweight children.
- As per UNICEF report, India is at 17th spot for the highest number of stunted children in India.
- Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh has the highest percentages of underweight childbirths in India.
Malnutrition in India – Schemes Launched by Government of India
The Government of India had launched multiple schemes to address the problems of the high rate of malnutrition in India.
Below tables give details on the Government of India schemes to address malnutrition
|Schemes||Details of the scheme|
|Integrated Child Development Scheme||
|National Nutrition Policy||
|Mid Day Meal Scheme||
|National Nutrition Policy||
|National Health Mission||
|Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojna||
|National Nutrition Mission||
Which date is observed as World Food Day?
October 16 is observed as World Food Day.
Malnutrition – UPSC Notes:- Download PDF Here
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