News / Health

    New WHO Website Provides Guidance on Life-Saving Nutrition

    The World Health Organization (WHO) reports millions of people are dying and suffering every year from malnutrition, which includes under-nutrition, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and overweight problems and obesity.  WHO is launching a new web-powered initiative, called electronic Library of Evidence for Nutrition Actions, or eLENA for short.  The website provides guidance on life-saving nutrition interventions to governments and health-care providers.

    Treating malnutriion

    The World Health Organization says there is a vast amount of information available on how to treat malnutrition in its various forms.  The problem is much of this advice on preventive and therapeutic nutrition interventions is conflicting.  

    This, it says, is not only confusing, but can be deadly. WHO says its new website can help countries cope with the terrible health threats posed by malnutrition.  It says the new project presents the latest advice on which interventions can best tackle the main forms of malnutrition.  These include under-nutrition, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and overweight problems and obesity.

    Tackling under, over nutrition

    WHO Director for Health and Development, Francsco Branca, says countries all over the world are tackling a combination of under-nutrition and over-nutrition.  He says developing countries are particularly affected by this dual burden.

    “We can say that forms like child underweight, micro-nutrient deficiencies and poor breast feeding, which obviously are the main forms of under-nutrition, are responsible for seven percent of the deaths every year - about four million children under five die out of this," said Dr. Branca. "It is 10 percent of the global disease burden."

    Micronutrient deficiencies, obesity

    Micronutrient deficiencies include iodine deficiency, the world’s most prevalent, yet easily preventable cause of brain damage.  It also causes anemia, which affects 1.6 billion people, vitamin A and zinc deficiencies, which affect hundreds of millions of very young children.

    The third form of malnutrition is overweight and obesity.  WHO reports around 1.5 billion adults over age 20 are overweight or obese.  And, global estimates suggest more than 40 million children under age five are already overweight or obese.

    Dr. Branca says a lot of work needs to be done in the area of childhood obesity.  But, he notes some community projects aimed at helping children keep down their weight are meeting with some success.  These projects he says focus on improving the quality of food offered to children in school and promoting physical activity.

    “Making sure that the supply of the daily offer of food in the educational institution is adequate with lower energy content," he said. "There are more and more efforts towards, for example, the reduction of consumption of soft drinks, which is one of the key components of child obesity, the promotion of higher quality of food, for example fruit and vegetables - there are several, for example, initiatives in Europe to improve the offer of fruit and vegetables in schools as well as the promotion of leisure, physical activity."

    WHO reports billions of people are affected by one or more types of malnutrition.  It says the website, which has just been launched, will provide countries with the science and informed guidance they need to reduce the needless death and suffering associated with malnutrition.


    You May Like

    Clinton, Trump and the 'Woman’s Card'

    Ask supporters of Democratic front-runner in US presidential campaign, and they’ll tell you Republican presidential candidate is playing a dangerous hand

    Russian Censorship Group Seeks Chinese Help to Better Control Internet

    At recent Safe Internet League forum in Moscow, speakers from both nations underscored desire for authorities to further limit and control information online

    Video Makeshift Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Free classes in Islamabad park serve a few of the country’s nearly 25 million out-of-school youths; NGO cites ‘education crisis’

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensionsi
    X
    April 29, 2016 12:28 AM
    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensions

    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Bangladesh Targeted Killings Spark Wave of Fear

    People in Bangladesh’s capital are expressing deep concern over the brutal attacks that have killed secular blogger, and most recently a gay rights activist and an employee of the U.S. embassy. Xulhaz Mannan, an embassy protocol officer and the editor of the country’s only gay and transgender magazine Roopban; and his friend Mehboob Rabbi Tanoy, a gay rights activist, were hacked to death by five attackers in Mannan’s Dhaka home earlier this month.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.
    Video

    Video West Urges Unity in Libya as Migrant Numbers Soar

    The Italian government says a NATO-led mission aimed at stemming the flow of migrants from Libya to Europe could be up and running by July. There are concerns that the number of migrants could soar as the route through Greece and the Balkans remains blocked. Western powers say the political chaos in Libya is being exploited by people smugglers — and they are pressuring rival groups to come together under the new unity government. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Russia’s TV Rain Swims Against Tide in Sea of Kremlin Propaganda

    Russia’s media freedoms have been gradually eroded under President Vladimir Putin as his government has increased state ownership, influence, and restrictions on critical reporting. Television, where most Russians get their news, has been the main target and is now almost completely state controlled. But in the Russian capital, TV Rain stands out as an island in a sea of Kremlin propaganda.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora