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‘More Holistic Conceptualization’ Needed To Address Global Malnutrition

Medical Journal of Australia: Rethinking malnutrition, and its solutions
Alessandro Demaio, medical doctor and co-founder of NCDFREE

“…[A] double burden of malnutrition describes a coexistence of both undernutrition, including wasting, growth stunting, and deficiencies in micronutrients (including iron, folate, and vitamin A), with overweight and obesity — and resulting nutrition-related non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, or cancers. … In reality, it is a combination of biological, environmental, and behavioral factors that determine bodyweight — a dimension that is particularly important and apparent when considering the global scale of the burden of malnutrition. … The change to a more holistic conceptualization of malnutrition may seem subtle, but the potential public health benefits could well prove transformational. … If we can move beyond traditional silos and focus efforts on shared drivers, solutions, and treatments to all forms of malnutrition, we will be truly kicking goals” (4/11).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.