Double burden of malnutrition in Vietnam

  • October 29, 2018

Vietnam faces the double burden of malnutrition, namely the coexistence of under-nutrition along with overweight and obesity. Expert say without efforts to raise awareness about the role of nutrition, the height of Vietnamese people will not improve.

This boy is only 1.13metres tall and 17 kilos in weight. Meanwhile, the standard height and weight of a 7-year-old boy recommended by the World Health Organisation is 1.22 metres and 23 kilos.

Concerned about their children’s weight and height, many mothers take their children to the National Institute of Nutrition for check-ups.

Doctors said parents’ misconception about children’s nutrition has led to weak bones and obesity – a common situation in big cities.

Experts say Vietnam is facing a double burden of malnutrition, which is under-nutrition in remote areas and obesity in large cities.

The experts say without changing this situation, it is difficult for Vietnamese to reach their potential height. Therefore, to improve the height of Vietnamese, it is important to have proper nutritional interventions, especially during the first 1,000 days of life.

The National Institute of Nutrition said Vietnam aims to increase the average height to 176 cm for men and 156 cm for women aged 18.

In addition, it aims to reduce the stunted malnourished rate among under-five children to less than 20% and curb adult obesity at below 12%.

The institute said raising awareness about nutrition is extremely important to improve physical fitness and stature of Vietnamese people.

Source: Vietnamnet

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