Health 14:35 15/10/2019 Armenia

UNICEF: 3% of children are underweight in Armenia

An alarmingly high number of children are suffering the consequences of poor diets and a food system that is failing them, UNICEF warned today in a new report on children, food and nutrition.

The State of the World’s Children 2019: Children, food and nutrition finds that at least 1 in 3 children under five – or over 200 million – is either undernourished or overweight. Almost 2 in 3 children between six months and two years of age are not fed food that supports their rapidly growing bodies and brains. This puts them at risk of poor brain development, weak learning, low immunity, increased infections and, in many cases, death.

“Despite all the technological, cultural and social advances of the last few decades, we have lost sight of this most basic fact: If children eat poorly, they live poorly,” said Henrietta Fore, UNICEF Executive Director. “Millions of children subsist on an unhealthy diet because they simply do not have a better choice. The way we understand and respond to malnutrition needs to change: It is not just about getting children enough to eat; it is above all about getting them the right food to eat. That is our common challenge today.”

The report provides the most comprehensive assessment yet of 21st century child malnutrition in all its forms. It describes a triple burden of malnutrition: Undernutrition, hidden hunger caused by a lack of essential nutrients, and overweight among children under the age of five, noting that around the world:

• 149 million children are stunted, or too short for their age,
• 50 million children are wasted, or too thin for their height,
• 340 million children – or 1 in 2 – suffer from deficiencies in essential vitamins and nutrients such as vitamin A and iron,
• 40 million children are overweight or obese.

The report warns that poor eating and feeding practices start from the earliest days of a child’s life. Though breastfeeding can save lives, for example, only 42 per cent of children under six months of age are exclusively breastfed and an increasing number of children are fed infant formula. Sales of milk-based formula grew by 72 per cent between 2008 and 2013 in upper middle-income countries such as Brazil, China and Turkey, largely due to inappropriate marketing and weak policies and programmes to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.

As children begin transitioning to soft or solid foods around the six-month mark, too many are introduced to the wrong kind of diet, according to the report. Worldwide, close to 45 per cent of children between six months and two years of age are not fed any fruits or vegetables. Nearly 60 per cent do not eat any eggs, dairy, fish or meat.

As children grow older, their exposure to unhealthy food becomes alarming, driven largely by inappropriate marketing and advertising, the abundance of ultra-processed foods in cities but also in remote areas, and increasing access to fast food and highly sweetened beverages.

For example, the report shows that 42 per cent of school-going adolescents in low- and middle-income countries consume carbonated sugary soft drinks at least once a day and 46 per cent eat fast food at least once a week. Those rates go up to 62 per cent and 49 per cent, respectively, for adolescents in high-income countries.

As a result, overweight and obesity levels in childhood and adolescence are increasing worldwide. From 2000 to 2016, the proportion of overweight children between 5 and 19 years of age doubled from 1 in 10 to almost 1 in 5. Ten times more girls and 12 times more boys in this age group suffer from obesity today than in 1975.

The greatest burden of malnutrition in all its forms is shouldered by children and adolescents from the poorest and most marginalized communities, the report notes. Only 1 in 5 children aged six months to two years from the poorest households eats a sufficiently diverse diet for healthy growth. Even in high-income countries such as the UK, the prevalence of overweight is more than twice as high in the poorest areas as in the richest areas.

The report also notes that climate-related disasters cause severe food crises. Drought, for example, is responsible for 80 per cent of damage and losses in agriculture, dramatically altering what food is available to children and families, as well as the quality and price of that food.

To address this growing malnutrition crisis in all its forms, UNICEF is issuing an urgent appeal to governments, the private sector, donors, parents, families and businesses to help children grow healthy by:

1. Empowering families, children and young people to demand nutritious food, including by improving nutrition education and using proven legislation – such as sugar taxes – to reduce demand for unhealthy foods.
2. Driving food suppliers to do the right thing for children, by incentivizing the provision of healthy, convenient and affordable foods.
3. Building healthy food environments for children and adolescents by using proven approaches, such as accurate and easy-to-understand labelling and stronger controls on the marketing of unhealthy foods.
4. Mobilizing supportive systems – health, water and sanitation, education and social protection – to scale up nutrition results for all children.
5. Collecting, analyzing and using good-quality data and evidence to guide action and track progress.

Situation in Armenia

3% of Armenian children are underweight. 4 percent of children are undernourished and 2 percent are severely undernourished. According to the regions, malnutrition ranges from 0% in Tavush to 23% in Aragatsotn.

14% of children under the age of 5 are overweight. This means that being overweight is a much bigger issue among Armenian children than being underweight. Although the differences are not big, the overweight prevalence is higher among boys (15%) than among girls (13%). If we compare the regional indices, we will see that children living in Ararat are more likely to be overweight (36 percent) than children in other provinces (5-19 percent).

Another talking point is the nutrition of only 24% of 6-23-month-old babies in Armenia meet the minimum acceptable diet. 



Source Panorama.am
Share |

Related news

Տեքստում սխալ կամ վրիպակ նկատելու դեպքում, ուղարկեք խմբագրին հաղորդագրություն` նշելով տվյալ սխալը, այնուհետև սեղմելով Ctrl-Enter:

Newsfeed

13:07
New Pentagon report says Turkey's Syria incursion is helping ISIS mount a comeback
Turkey's decision to launch a military operation targeting America's Kurdish partners in northern Syria and the Trump...
12:59
Bright Armenia faction has yet to make a final decision on draft state budget
The Bright Armenia opposition faction of the Armenian parliament has submitted more than 150 proposals on the draft state budget for 2020, MP...
12:29
Movses Hakobyan set to head Defense Ministry’s Military Oversight Service
By the order of Armenia’s defense minister, Colonel-General Movses Hakobyan has been appointed Head of the Military Oversight Service of...
12:09
Tusk to become new EPP president in Zagreb
Outgoing European Council President Donald Tusk will be the new president of the European People's Party, the EPP said on Monday ahead of...
11:39
Harut Sassounian: Erdogan meets Trump in the White House: the result is a tragicomedy
It is difficult to know where to start commenting on the ridiculous press conference between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US Pres....
10:54
Amnesty says 106 killed in Iran protests
Days of protests in Iran over rising fuel prices and a subsequent government crackdown have killed more than 100 people across the country,...
20:19
Armenian PM meets with leading Russian media representatives
Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan of Armenia on Tuesday met with a group of representatives of the leading Russian media outlets in Armenia, the...
19:59
Venice's historic Saint Mark's Basilica faces costly flood clean-up
Venice’s historic Saint Mark’s Basilica will need millions of euros of restoration work after it was flooded this week for just the...
19:37
Official: Tourist arrivals from China to Armenia grow strongly
Armenia welcomed a total of 1,459,000 tourists from January to September this year, up 14.4% from the same period last year, President of the...
19:01
Sweden drops Assange rape investigation after nearly 10 years
A Swedish prosecutor dropped an investigation into an allegation of rape against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, ending the near decade-old...
18:39
Kocharyan trial: Judge denies defense motion for prosecutor’s recusal
Judge Anna Danibekyan of the Yerevan Court of Gerenal Jurisdiction presiding over the trial of Armenia’s second President Robert Kocharyan...
17:33
Armenia’s third president leaves for Croatia
Chairman of the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA), third President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan on Tuesday paid a working visit to Zagreb, Croatia,...
16:56
Turkey will launch another Syria operation if area not cleared of Kurdish YPG: Anadolu
Turkey’s foreign minister said Ankara would launch a new military operation in northeast Syria if the area was not cleared of what he...
16:50
Armenia’s Pashinyan to pay official visit to Italy
On November 20-22, Armenia's Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan will pay an official visit to Italy with his spouse Anna Hakobyan, his...
16:38
Armenia’s education ministry assures us of something it has no data on
By an order of Armenia’s Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport Arayik Harutyunyan dated 11 November 2019, starting from 1...
15:01
Russian donors contribute €1 mln to rescue flood-stricken Venice
The Italian Embassy in Russia has raised one million euro in donations to deal with the aftermath of a long stretch of floods inundating Venice...
14:54
Armenia wins three medals at int'l boxing tournament in Belarus
Armenian athletes have conquered three medals – one silver and two bronze – at the 2019 Boxing EUBC Viktor Liventsev Memorial held...
14:37
U.S. lawmakers call for military aid parity to Armenia, Azerbaijan
Congressional Armenian Caucus leaders Congressman Frank Pallone, Congresswoman Jackie Speier, and Congressman Adam Schiff have sent a letter to...
14:10
Armenian lavash cooking demonstration held at American History Museum in Washington
The National Museum of American History in Washington in partnership with the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage hosted on November 15 a...
13:41
MPs electing members of the Anticorruption Committee
MPs at Armenian parliament are electing members of the Anticorruption Committee that will be established as part of the country’s new...
12:52
Georgian parliament resumes work amid protests
The Parliament of Georgia resumed its work on Tuesday after riot police removed barricades and cleared the legislature’s entrances from...
12:33
Armenia parliament adopted legislation raising minimum salary to 68,000 drams
The Armenian National Assembly adopted in the second and final reading on Tuesday the amendments to the RA Law about the minimum monthly salary...
11:35
Armenia’s Zhora Sargsyan wins prize at Long-Thibaud-Crespin international classical music competition
Armenian pianist Zhora Sargsyan won the third prize in the piano category of the Long-Thibaud-Crespin international classical music competition...
11:12
WCO Secretary General welcomes Armenia’s customs reform
World Customs Organization (WCO) Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya who is in Armenia to attend a regional forum, referred to as “Digital...
11:01
Armenia loses to Italy for the biggest defeat in its history
The Armenian national football team suffered the biggest defeat in its history losing to Italy 9 - 1 in the last qualifier for the 2020 European...
10:31
The running order of Junior Eurovision 2019 named
The running order of the Junior Eurovision 2019 was decided on November 18. The position of the countries participating the contest was decided...
20:34
VivaCell-MTS launched an interactive mobile application for learning a language
VivaCell-MTS has launched an interactive and convenient mobile application “E-Teacher” for learning languages. As the company...
19:14
"Stolen" Banksy sculpture expected to fetch $1.3M USD at auction
One of Banksy‘s “stolen” artworks is currently listed for auction with an estimated sale price of around $970,000 to $1.29...
18:32
Around 400 young people from Armenia and Artsakh marked the International Students’ Day
“The Victorious” initiative group organized a series of events in Armenian regions on Sunday dedicated to the International...
17:27
Wrestler Artur Aleksanyan named UNICEFF National Ambassador in Armenia
Armenian Greco-Roman wrestler, an Olympic Champion, a three-time World Champion and a four-time European Champion Artur Aleksanyan was named as...

Follow us and get updates!

Most popular articles

{"core.blocks.header.spell_message1":"Selected mistake: ","core.blocks.header.spell_message2":"Send a message about the mistake?"}