Tracking the Prevalence of Malnutrition in Populations

Many different types of malnutrition surveys exist, but all seek to gather data about the prevalence of malnutrition. In these surveys, weight, height, and/or upper arm circumference are measured and used to calculate indices like Body Mass Index (BMI). The data collected can be used to estimate the prevalence of undernutrition (weight-for-age), stunting (height-for-age), wasting (weight-for-height), and/or underweight (BMI-for-age) in a population.

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Malnutrition surveys are a vital component of an evidence-based approach to nutrition programming. Surveys provide detailed, reliable, and timely information on the prevalence of malnutrition and other vital indicators. Malnutrition surveys are conducted to assess the nutritional status of a population and identify any specific nutritional problems. Surveys can also be used to monitor the progress of nutrition interventions and assess their impact on nutrition outcomes. For example, surveys can be used to compare the prevalence of malnutrition and other nutrition indicators before and after an intervention to assess the impact of the intervention.

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