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Few challenges facing the global community today match the scale of malnutrition, a condition that directly affects one in three people. Malnutrition manifests itself in many different ways: as poor child growth and development; as individuals who are skin and bone or prone to infection; as those who are carrying too much weight or whose blood contains too much sugar, salt, fat, or cholesterol; or those who are deficient in important vitamins or minerals. Malnutrition and diet are by far the biggest risk factors for the global burden of disease: every country is facing a serious public health challenge from malnutrition.

The economic consequences represent losses of 11 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) every year in Africa and Asia, whereas preventing malnutrition delivers $16 in returns on investment for every $1 spent. The world’s countries have agreed on targets for nutrition, but despite some progress in recent years the world is off track to reach those targets. This third stocktaking of the state of the world’s nutrition points to ways to reverse this trend and end all forms of malnutrition by 2030.

Over the past decade, momentum around nutrition has been steadily building, with governments and stakeholders around the world acknowledging nutrition as a key component of development. In 2015, the Sustainable Development Goals enshrined the objective of “ending all forms of malnutrition”, challenging the world to think and act differently on malnutrition—to focus on all its faces and work to end it, for all people, by 2030.

The Global Nutrition Report is the only independent and comprehensive annual review of the state of the world’s nutrition. It is a multipartner initiative that holds a mirror up to our successes and failures at meeting intergovernmental nutrition targets. It documents progress on commitments made on the global stage, and it recommends actions to accelerate that progress. The Global Nutrition Report aims to be a beacon, providing examples of change and identifying opportunities for action. This year’s report focuses on the theme of making—and measuring— SMART commitments to nutrition and identifying what it will take to end malnutrition in all its forms by 2030.

Download the complete report here

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