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Document Type

Research Article - Invited

Abstract

Today, while the number of stunted children is decreasing in all geographies, the progress is not consistent. Moreover, there is an increasing prevalence of overweight and obesity among children and adolescent. Globally, about half of all children under five do not receive essential nutrients, often unnoticed until too late. On the other end of the spectrum, the incidence of overweight and obesity in 5-19 year old has increased from 4% in 1975 to 18% in 2016 1. These trends reflect a ‘triple burden of malnutrition’, a burden that impacts the survival, growth, and development of children, and in turn, economies, and communities. This is a major risk factor of mortality and negatively impacts physical, cognitive, performance and productivity in the subsistence geographies 2.

Low income in subsistence marketplaces is compounded by low literacy rates, which, in turn, affect the decision-making process in food acquisition and nourishing the families (Viswanathan, 2013). Individuals, households, an communities in these markets are often not aware that they even have a need—that children are nutritionally deficient and the problems it can cause later in life. They may not be aware of the nutritional options that are available and affordable, to deal with this deficiency.

This paper is intended to highlight nutritional concerns of subsistence marketplaces, discuss a few case studies with successful interventions, and provide suggestions for research and practice.

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