From ArticleWorld

Approximately 800 million people in the world today suffer from malnutrition, the vast majority of those in developing countries and 177 million of which are children. One person dies of malnutrition about every 2 seconds. Lack of food and clean drinking water and diseases like AIDS lead either to the body not receiving the vitamins it needs or not being able to absorb the ones it does.

Malnutrition can occur because of the lack of a single vitamin or simply because the person is not getting enough food. It is a major problem nowadays because of poverty, natural disasters and war. To give one example, cases of acute malnutrition in the young children of Iraq has doubled to 400 000 since the UN invasion. Giving perspective to this statistic is the fact that a major problem amongst the same children ten years ago was obesity.


Malnutrition may be mild or so severe that the damage caused by it is irreversible - or so severe indeed that death is the result. General symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, weight loss, muscle or bone deformation and a weaker immune system. Amongst the effects of the condition are stunted growth, reduced muscle growth and strength, and a reduction in intelligence and energy.

Deficiency diseases

Deficiency diseases include beriberi, a thiamine deficiency; scurvy, a lack of vitamin C; and rickets, a lack of vitamin D. All of which lead to death if not treated and yet so easily remedied by the supply of the element the diet lacks.