Chapter 2 Sustainable Development Goal 2.2: Malnutrition
Latin America and the Caribbean has shown important progress in reducing stunting, having reduced its prevalence from 18 percent to 11.3 percent in 20 years. However, in the period between 2012 and 2020, the rate of decrease slowed down, delaying the achievement of the SDG 2 target to reduce stunting by 50 percent by 2030. Mesoamerica has the highest prevalence of stunting (16.6 percent), followed by the Caribbean with 11.8 percent and South America with 8.6 percent.
In Latin America and the Caribbean, the rate of wasting is 1.3 percent, significantly lower than the world average of 6.7 percent.
In Latin America and the Caribbean overweight in children under five years has been increasing over the last 20 years and in 2020 the prevalence was 7.5 percent, 2 percentage points above the world average. South America shows the highest prevalence with 8.2 percent, followed by the Caribbean with 6.6 percent, and Mesoamerica with 6.3 percent. If these trends continue, the region and its subregions will not achieve the SDG 2 target of keeping overweight in children under five years below 3 percent by 2030.
In 2019, anaemia in women of reproductive age in the region was 17.2 percent. Although it is well below the world average, the region has not made progress in reducing this indicator in recent years, undermining the SDG target of reducing this prevalence by 50 percent by 2030. In the Caribbean the prevalence is 29.1 percent, in South America it is 17.3 percent and in Mesoamerica it is 14.6 percent.