[PAST EVENT] International Development and Global Health Speaker Series

April 8, 2013
4pm - 5pm
Andrews Hall, Room 101
605 Jamestown Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Drs. Chessa (Pan American Health Organization) and Randall Lutter (Resources for the Future) will discuss "Fetal and early childhood undernutrition, mortality and lifelong health: risks and policy implications", the topic of their recent article in Science.

Child undernutrition is a major public health challenge, estimated to be responsible for 2.2 million annual deaths. Implementation of available interventions could prevent one-third of these deaths. Emerging evidence suggests that breast-feeding can lead to improvements in intelligence quotient in children and lower risks of noncommunicable diseases in mothers and children decades later. Nonetheless, breast-feeding and complementary feeding practices differ greatly from global recommendations. Although the World Health Organization recommends that infants receive solely breast milk for the first 6 months of life, only about one-third of infants in low-income countries meet this goal, just one-third of children 6 to 24 months old in low-income countries meet the minimum criteria for dietary diversity, and only one in five who are breast-fed receive a minimum acceptable diet. Although the potential effects of improved breast-feeding and complementary feeding appear large, funding for research and greater use of existing effective interventions seems low compared with other life-saving child health interventions. Science 21 September 2012: Vol. 337 no. 6101 pp. 1495-1499