Food and Nutrition Security From the Start of Life by the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN)
There is growing concern today about the increasing global burden of malnutrition – both under nutrition and obesity – with health consequences throughout the life course. Malnutrition is a major factor in child health and survival; it has been estimated to be an underlying cause of up to 50–60 percent of under-five deaths. Today, almost a quarter of the world’s children, especially in Africa and Asia do not get adequate food. At the same time, there is a rising incidence of nutrition related noncommunicable diseases including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer.
Malnutrition – both under- and over – sets in during the first two years of life, mostly during infancy. Food and nutrition security during this period means ensuring early and exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months, followed by introduction of complementary foods along with continued breastfeeding up to two years. A growing body of evidence points to the key role of infant and young child feeding practices, especially early and exclusive breastfeeding, in mitigating both forms of malnutrition and in the prevention of child mortality. Nonetheless interventions that address these practices have not received adequate attention during the MDGs era, and thus there is an unused potential for achieving progress in food and nutrition security in the childhood but also in the adulthood. The post-MDGs development agenda should bridge this gap and make a priority of such interventions.
Please find attached the full submission.
This thematic discussion was led by FAO and WFP in collaboration with “The World We Want”.
The consultation was facilitated by the Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)