Il faut combattre la malnutrition

GENEVE – Chaque année dans les pays pauvres, 3,5 millions de mères et d'enfants de moins de 5 ans meurent, faute d'une alimentation adéquate pour combattre les maladies les plus communes. Correctement nourris, les trois quarts d'entre eux auraient survécu à la diarrhée ou au paludisme.

Pour ceux qui en réchappent, l'avenir n'est guère prometteur : toutes les études montrent que les la malnutrition lors des deux premières années d'existence entraîne des problèmes de santé et de développement pour tout le reste de la vie. La malnutrition altère les capacités d'apprentissage et de travail, ainsi que les autres facultés. Outre la souffrance humaine, son coût économique est élevé : selon la Banque mondiale, elle se traduit par une baisse de 2 à 3% du PIB des pays qui en sont frappés.

Le problème n'est pas tant la malnutrition aiguë de temps de crise, souvent la conséquence d'un conflit, que de réussir à attirer l'attention de l’Union européenne et du G-8 sur ce que l'on appelle la ampquot;faim cachéeampquot;, un phénomène qui affecte une personne sur trois dans le monde. Elle est due à une alimentation déséquilibrée ou à une carence en vitamines ou en minéraux nécessaires à la croissance et au fonctionnement de l'organisme.

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