Health> Vol.5 No.7, July 2013

Family and women decide child nutrition—The role of human development, capabilities and lifestyles

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ABSTRACT

In this article, capacities and freedom approach, as well as lifestyles are explored taking into account child nutrition, and other relevant dimensions of human life more than just economic and other elementary resources, and also social, cultural, psychological, values and freedom dimensions. Nourishment, health and survival are considered some of the elementary capabilities, and the concept of malnutrition, including under and over-nutrition, is discussed, based upon the comparison of data on food production and distribution from the macro level context, as well as from the family and individual levels included anthropometrical measurements. The advantages and limits of different kinds of measurements are discussed, suggesting more complex approaches, based also upon family and gender equality. The double burden of malnutrition, under and over-nourishment of children is highlighted as a public health issue to be resolved by adequate policies and considering the role of female empowerment, nutrition-knowledge and education as relevant keys to achieve equality in family food and resource distribution, healthy lifestyles and human development.

Cite this paper

Gomes, C. (2013) Family and women decide child nutrition—The role of human development, capabilities and lifestyles. Health, 5, 1132-1140. doi: 10.4236/health.2013.57153.

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