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food insecurity
childhood obesity
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Millions Of Kids Worldwide Face The Dangers Of Malnutrition: 450 Million Might Be Stunted In Fifteen Years
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Millions Of Kids Worldwide Face the Dangers Of Malnutrition: 450 Million Might Be Stunted In Fifteen Years

In a world obsessed with being thin and worried about the growing epidemic of childhood obesity, there is another epidemic that is being forgotten. According to a report recently released by the British charity, Save the Children some 450 million children worldwide are facing mental and physical problems related to malnutrition. Every seven days, at least three hundred of those children will die and the ones who live are at increased risk of facing permanent damage that can impact their lives as well as decrease the potential economic power of the nation in which they live.

Mental and physical stunting from malnutrition is already evident in a number of nations. In Asia, for instance, there are as many as one hundred million children who have been irreversibly impacted by a lack of basic nutrition. Climate change and other factors are impacting the food yields in that part of the world. The number is expected to increase seven times higher by 2050.

While the number of children who have died from malnutrition has dropped from twelve million to 7.6, there are still many who are in danger of contracting serious diseases- conditions that they would be unable to fight off in their weakened conditions. In those countries that are hardest hit by malnutrition, the economy stumbles as well with malnourished children making an estimated twenty percent less than others. One in six of those children are likely to skip school to find employment, including menial jobs that may pay them in scraps of food.

In the United States, seventeen million children have "food insecurity", a condition marked by not having adequate and routine access to enough food to be healthy. That problem has been consistently proven to affect mental growth in younger kids as well as the grades of older students. Nearly half of all babies born in the United States are born into families that get some supplemental nutrition from the Women's, Infants and Children program, popularly known as WIC.

Congress is currently discussing potential budget cuts, with the WIC program on the list for those cuts. Those cuts could mean a serious impact on nearly 350,000 in that program. Another food program, which provides food to local food banks is also facing multimillion dollar budget cuts as well, accounting for nearly one fifth of the total budget for the program. That program is meant to pass on agricultural surpluses and other items that might have gone to waste.


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