Malnutrition can affect all areas of health and be detrimental to daily activities. The insidious nature of malnourishment is that eating either too much or too little causes this issue. How can you make sure you’re eating properly?
Though undernourishment predominantly occurs in low and middle-income countries (LMIC), this pervasive health issue burdens high-income countries as well. Overnutrition in the United States affects about 55% of the population and 85% of Americans lack essential vitamins; this is not just an issue in Indonesia1, 2.
Interventions for malnutrition-related issues in Indonesia involve financial support for affected families as well as nutritional education. While you may not have severe financial constraints affecting your nutrition, making healthy choices is difficult when you are surrounded by delicious, cheap food that lacks nutritional value.
So, what are some good ways to prevent malnutrition3?
- When making dietary choices, focus on the variety, nutritional value and amount of food chosen.
- Make sure to fill your plate with vegetables, fruits, grains and proteins. Additionally, while oils are not technically a food group, health oils should be consumed in moderation.
- Choose options lower in saturated fat, sodium and added sugars.
- Make sure to read nutrition labels on all prepackaged products. Often times, making recipes from scratch is the easiest way to eat healthy!
You can check out the United States public health initiative, Choose My Plate, in order to build your own nutritious meal plan and learn more about healthy lifestyle choices; there is even a section about eating healthy on a budget! Make an eating plan that is both healthy and nutritious at:
The only potential issue with the website is the recommendation of dairy as a necessity, you can have a healthy lifestyle without the consumption of dairy products, just make sure to get your calcium, vitamin D and potassium elsewhere.
Empower yourself to make the eating choices that are best for your body!
Written by: Devon Boullion
1Chopra, M., Galbraith, S., & Darnton-Hill, I. (2002). A global response to a global problem: the epidemic of overnutrition. Bulletin Of The World Health Organization, 80(12), 952-958.
2Guardian New and Media Limited, (2015). Hidden hunger: America’s growing malnutrition epidemic. The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/feb/10/nutrition-hunger-food-children-vitamins-us
3U.S. Department of Agriculture. ChooseMyPlate.gov Website. Washington, DC. Build a Healthy Eating Style. Retrieved from https://www.choosemyplate.gov/MyPlate