Many people around the world are suffering for for food in poverty, Below are the statistics only for 2018.
Hunger concepts and definitions
Hunger defines a short-term physical discomfort as a result of chronic food shortage, or in severe cases, a life-threatening lack of food. (National Research Council, 2006)
World hunger refers to hunger aggregated to the global level. Related terms include food insecurity and malnutrition. Food insecurity refers to limited or unreliable access to foods that are safe and nutritionally adequate (National Research Council, 2006). Malnutrition is a condition resulting from insufficient intake of biologically necessary nutrients (National Research Council, 2006). Although malnutrition includes both overnutrition and undernutrition, the focus for global hunger is undernutrition.
There are two basic types of malnutrition/undernutrition. The first and most important is protein-energy malnutrition (PEM), or a lack of calories and protein. Food is converted into energy by humans, and the energy contained in food is measured by calories. Protein is necessary for key body functions, including the development and maintenance of muscles. Protein-energy malnutrition is the more lethal form of malnutrition/hunger and is the type of malnutrition that is referred to when world hunger is discussed. This leads to growth failure. Principal types of growth failure are:
- Based on physical measurements, like weight, malnutrition can be broken down into moderate acute malnutrition (MAM) and severe acute malnutrition (SAM), with SAM being worse (Black et al., 2016).
- There are two types of acute malnutrition. Wasting (also called marasmus) is having a very low weight for a person’s height. Nutritional edema (also called kwashiorkor) is swollen feet, face or limbs (UNICEF, 2015). See visual illustrations here.
- Stunting is being too short for a person’s age. It is a slow, cumulative process and develops over a long period as a result of inadequate nutrition or repeated infections, or both. Stunted children may have normal body proportions but look younger than their actual age.