Country Nutrition Profiles

Explore the latest data on nutrition at global, regional and country level. Use our interactive profiles to find out what progress your country has made towards the global nutrition targets. Photo: Asian Development Bank

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Global

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The global burden of malnutrition at a glance

The world has made some progress towards achieving global nutrition targets. However, this progress is far too slow and malnutrition persists at high levels.

Few countries are on course to meet any of the targets for maternal, infant and young child nutrition (MIYCN). The latest available data shows that no country is on course to reduce the prevalence of anaemia among women of reproductive age, with one in three (32.8%) women aged 15 to 49 years affected, particularly those who are pregnant. Globally, it is estimated that 14.6% of infants have a low weight at birth, with only 11 countries on course to meet the low birthweight target. Some progress has been made towards achieving the exclusive breastfeeding target, with 32 countries on course and 44.0% of infants aged 0 to 5 months worldwide exclusively breastfed. Thirty countries are on course to meet the stunting target and 49 countries are on course to meet the wasting target, yet 21.3% of children under 5 years of age are still affected by stunting and 6.9% by wasting. Worldwide, 53 countries are on course to prevent an increase in the prevalence of overweight among children under 5 years of age, which currently affects 5.6% of children.

Very few countries around the world are on course to meet the targets for diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs). No country is on course to halt the rise of obesity, with 15.1% of adult (aged 18 years or over) women and 11.1% of adult men living with obesity globally. At the same time, diabetes is estimated to affect 7.9% of adult women and 9.0% of adult men, with very few countries on course to prevent these numbers from increasing.

The Global Nutrition Report brings together the latest data on diet, the burden of malnutrition, nutrition strategies and financing and social determinants of nutrition to comprehensively assess the state of global nutrition.

Progress towards the global nutrition targets

WRA anaemia

WRA anaemia

49 Some progress

138 No progress or worsening

7 No data

Low birth weight

Low birth weight

12 On course

49 Some progress

85 No progress or worsening

48 No data

Exclusive breastfeeding

Exclusive breastfeeding

32 On course

23 Some progress

26 No progress or worsening

113 No data

Under-5 stunting

Under-5 stunting

30 On course

38 Some progress

17 No progress or worsening

109 No data

Under-5 wasting

Under-5 wasting

49 On course

19 Some progress

23 No progress or worsening

103 No data

Under-5 overweight

Under-5 overweight

53 On course

31 No progress or worsening

110 No data

Adult female obesity

Adult female obesity

190 No progress or worsening

4 No data

Adult male obesity

Adult male obesity

190 No progress or worsening

4 No data

Adult female diabetes

Adult female diabetes

26 On course

164 No progress or worsening

4 No data

Adult male diabetes

Adult male diabetes

8 On course

182 No progress or worsening

4 No data

Source: WHO Global Health Observatory 2017; UNICEF/WHO low birthweight estimates, 2019; UNICEF global databases Infant and Young Child Feeding, 2020; UNICEF/WHO/World Bank Joint Child Malnutrition Estimates Expanded Database: Stunting, Wasting and Overweight (July 2020, New York); NCD Risk Factor Collaboration 2016-2017.

Notes: Progress towards the maternal, infant and young child nutrition (MIYCN) and diet-related non-communicable disease (NCD) global nutrition targets is classified as ‘on course’ if the target is met, ‘some progress' or ‘no progress or worsening’. MIYCN targets include anaemia among women of reproductive age (WRA, 15–49 years), infants with low birthweight, exclusive breastfeeding among infants under 6 months of age, and stunting, wasting and overweight in children under 5 years of age. NCD targets include adult obesity and diabetes; raised blood pressure and salt intake are not presented due to lack of country-level data. Obesity and diabetes are based on age-standardised modelled estimates for adults aged 18 years and older, using the WHO standard population; they are reported by sex due to limitations in data availability. Anaemia and low birthweight are also based on modelled estimates. The specific targets set are: 50% reduction of WRA anaemia, 30% reduction in low birthweight, increase the rate of exclusive breastfeeding in the first 6 months up to at least 50%, 40% reduction of under-5 stunting, reduce and maintain under-5 wasting to less than 5%, no increase in under-5 overweight; and halt the rise in obesity and diabetes prevalence. The methodologies for tracking progress differ across targets. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

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Diet

Infant and young child feeding

Prevalence of infant and young child feeding indicators

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Source: UNICEF global databases: Infant and Young Child Feeding (July 2020, New York). Available at: http://data.unicef.org/nutrition/iycf. Accessed 30 November 2020.

Notes: Prevalence (%) estimates are presented for infants and young children aged 0–23 months (age varies by indicator). The number of countries (not shown) varies by indicator due to differences in available surveys and so inferences may be affected. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Dietary intakes

Dietary intakes of key foods and nutrients in adults aged 25 years and over

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Source: Global Burden of Disease, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, 2020.

Notes: Intakes are reported in grams per day (g/d) for all dietary factors, except for omega 3 fatty acids (milligrams per day; mg/d) and polyunsaturated, saturated and trans fatty acids (percentage of daily energy intake; %E). Intakes are based on modelled estimates for adults aged 25 years and older. The dietary factors have been selected as those diet components that have a statistically significant relationship with at least one disease endpoint that can be generalisable to all populations. Protective dietary factors include fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds, whole grains, milk, fibre, polyunsaturated fat, omega 3 fatty acids and calcium. Harmful dietary factors include red meats, processed meats, sugar-sweetened beverages, trans fat and sodium. The theoretical minimum risk of exposure level (TMREL) represents the optimal dietary intake that minimises risk from all causes of deaths combined. For protective dietary factors, risk is assessed for intakes below the TMREL; intakes above the TMREL do not further reduce the risk. For all harmful dietary factors, except sodium, TMREL is set to zero, hence risk is assessed for intakes above the TMREL; for sodium, intakes below the TMREL provide no additional health benefit. Country income-level categories are based on the World Bank 2018 classification of countries into low-, lower-middle, upper-middle, and high-income. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

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Nutrition strategies and financing

National nutrition policies

Implemented national food and NCD policies

Food-based dietary guidelines
100/194
Legislation for mandatory salt iodisation
70/193
Sugar-sweetened beverage tax
73/194
Policy to reduce salt/sodium consumption
1/192
Policy to limit saturated fatty acid intake
3/192
Policy to eliminate industrially produced trans fatty acids
5/192
Policy to reduce the impact of marketing of foods and beverages high in saturated fats, trans fatty acids, free sugars, or salt on children
59/192
Operational policy, strategy, or action plan to reduce unhealthy diet related to non-communicable diseases
36/192
Operational, multisectoral policy, strategy or action plan for non-communicable diseases
81/192
Operational policy, strategy or action plan for diabetes
50/192

Source: Global Fortification Data Exchange, 2019. Available at: https://fortificationdata.org/interactive-map-fortification-legislation. Accessed 30 November 2020; WHO Country Capacity Survey, 2017; WHO Global Nutrition Policy Review, 2016–2017; WHO Global database on the Implementation of Nutrition Action (GINA); World Cancer Research Fund International NOURISHING database; FAO 2020. Available at: http://www.fao.org/nutrition/education/food- based-dietary-guidelines/en. Accessed 30 November 2020; WHO Global Health Observatory, 2020. Available at: https://apps.who.int/gho/data/view.main.2473. Accessed 30 November 2020.

Notes: Number of countries with food-based dietary guidelines in 2018, sugar-sweetened beverage tax in 2017 and all other policies in 2019. Policy is defined as a specific official decision or set of decisions designed to carry out a course of action endorsed by a political body, including a set of goals, priorities and main directions for attaining these goals, including legislation and product reformulation mandates. Strategy is defined as a long-term plan designed to achieve a particular goal. Action plan is defined as a scheme or course of action, which may correspond to a policy or strategy, with defined activities indicating who does what, when, how and with what resources to accomplish an objective. ‘Operational’ describes a policy, strategy or plan of action being used and implemented in the country, with resources and funding available to implement it. ‘Multisectoral’ applies to a policy, strategy or plan of action that involves different sectors (e.g., health, agriculture, education, finance). See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

National policy targets

Inclusion of targets related to the global nutrition targets in national policies

Reduce anaemia among women
102/192
Reduce number of infants born with low birth weight
89/192
Increase prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding in infants 0–5 months
63/192
Reduce child stunting
78/192
Reduce child wasting
88/192
Reduce child overweight
51/192
Reduce adolescent and adult overweight
3/192
Reduce salt/sodium intake
3/192
Reduce raised blood pressure prevalence
103/192
Reduce blood sugar levels/diabetes prevalence
3/192
Multisectoral comprehensive nutrition plan
93/192

Source: WHO GINA, 2nd Global Nutrition Policy Review, 2016–2017.

Notes: Number of countries with target included in national policies in 2017. Any national government-implemented policy, strategy or plan relevant to improving nutrition and promoting healthy diet was considered for 194 countries. Legislation, codes, regulations, protocols and guidelines, as well as non-governmental policies, were excluded. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Nutrition intervention coverage

Population coverage of key supplementation and fortification interventions

Data is only available at the country level

Official development assistance (ODA)

Allocation of ODA for nutrition

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Source: Development Initiatives based on OECD DAC CRS, 2019.

Notes: Gross official development assistance (ODA) received or disbursed for basic nutrition (CRS code: 12240) reported in US$ millions (constant 2018 prices) and as percentage (%) of the total ODA received/disbursed. Estimates include ODA grants and loans, but excludes other official flows and private grants. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

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Social determinants of nutrition

Population composition

Total population, thousands 7,794,799
Under-5 population, thousands 677,942
65 and over population, thousands 727,606
Rural population, % 44

Source: UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2019). World Population Prospects 2019. Available at: https://population.un.org/wpp/Download/Standard/Population. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Estimates are reported in thousands for total population, population group aged 0–59 months, population group aged above 65 years and as percentage (%) for population living in rural areas. All estimates are based on modelled estimates for 2020. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Prevalence of undernourishment

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Source: FAO Statistics Division, 2019. Food Security/Suite of Food Security Indicators. Available at: http://www.fao.org/sustainable-development-goals/indicators/211/en. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Prevalence (%) is calculated from 3-year averages of modelled estimates, with the associated year being the middle year of those three (e.g., 2018 estimate is the average of 2017–2019). The prevalence of undernourishment (PoU) is defined as the proportion of the population whose habitual food consumption is insufficient to provide the dietary energy levels required to maintain a normal active and healthy life. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Under-5 mortality rate per 1,000 live births

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Source: UNICEF global databases: Under-five mortality (September 2020, New York). Available at: http://data.unicef.org/child-mortality/under-five. Accessed 30 November 2020.

Notes: Number of deaths of children aged 0–59 months per 1,000 live births, based on modelled estimates up to 2019. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Population density of health workers per 1,000 people

Type Number Year
Medical doctors 1.57 2017
Nurses and midwives 3.82 2018
Community health workers No data 2020

Source: WHO's Global Health Workforce Statistics, OECD, supplemented by country data, 2019. Available at: https://data.worldbank.org/indicator. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Number of health workers per 1,000 people, based on modelled estimates. Health worker definition and training vary across countries and human resources tend to be concentrated in urban areas, so inferences may be affected. Physicians include generalist and specialist medical doctors. Nurses and midwives include professional, auxiliary and enrolled nurses and midwives, as well as other associated personnel, e.g. dental and primary care nurses. Community health workers include various types of community health aides, many with country-specific occupational titles such as community health officers, community health-education workers, family health workers, lady health visitors and health extension package workers. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Source of drinking water

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Source: WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation, 2020. Available at: https://washdata.org/data. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Percentage (%) of population using each drinking water source, based on modelled estimates up to 2017. ‘Safely managed’ refers to using an improved (i.e. by design and construction has the potential to deliver safe water) drinking water source located on the premises, available when needed and free from faecal and priority chemical contamination. ‘Basic’ refers to using an improved source, for which water collection time is not more than 30 minutes for a round trip, including queuing. ‘Limited’ refers to an improved source for which water collection time exceeds 30 minutes for a round trip including queuing. ‘Unimproved’ refers to an unprotected dug well or unprotected spring. ‘Surface water’ refers to drinking water directly from a river, dam, lake, pond, stream, canal or irrigation canal. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Type of sanitation facility

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Source: WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation, 2020. Available at: https://washdata.org/data. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Percentage (%) of population using different types of sanitation facilities, based on modelled estimates up to 2017. ‘Safely managed’ refers to using improved (i.e. designed to hygienically separate excreta from human contact) sanitation facilities not shared with other households and where excreta are safely disposed in situ or transported and treated off-site. ‘Basic’ refers to using improved facilities not shared with other households. ‘Limited’ refers to using improved facilities shared between two or more households. ‘Unimproved’ refers to using pit latrines without a slab or platform, hanging latrines or bucket latrines. ‘Open defecation’ refers to disposal of human faeces in fields, forests, bushes, open bodies of water, beaches and other open spaces or with solid waste. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Annual gross domestic product (GDP) per capita

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Source: International Monetary Fund (IMF) World Economic Outlook database, 2020. Available at: https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WEO/weo-database/2020/October. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Annual gross domestic product (GDP) per capita based on purchasing power parity (PPP) in constant 2017 international dollars. Estimates are based on population-weighted means of 180 countries. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Population living below the poverty line

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Source: World Bank, 2020. Available at: http://iresearch.worldbank.org/PovcalNet/home.aspx. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Percentage (%) of population living on less than US$1.90 or less than US$3.20 per day, based on 2011 purchasing power parity (PPP), up to 2018. Estimates are based on population-weighted means of between 161 and 168 countries. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Country income inequality index

Data is only available at the country level

Gender-related determinants

Early childbearing NA NA
Gender Inequality Index (score) NA NA
Gender Inequality Index (country rank) NA NA

Source: UNICEF global databases: Maternal and Newborn Health Coverage (August 2020, New York). Available at: http://data.unicef.org/maternal-health/delivery-care; UN Development Programme (UNDP). Human Development Report, 2019. Available at: http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/table-5-gender-inequality-index-gii. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Early childbearing refers to the percentage (%) of women aged 20–24 years who gave birth before the age of 18 in 2019. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.

Prevalence of female secondary school enrolment

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Source: UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2019. Available at: http://data.uis.unesco.org/. Accessed: 30 November 2020.

Notes: Percentage (net, %) estimates refer to the total number of female students in the official school age range for upper secondary education who are enrolled in any level of education out of the overall population of the same age group. See Methodology for more information on the indicators.