Our Work in Asia: Nepal

Nutrition Innovation Lab conducts rigorous research examining the relationships of nutrition, agriculture and health and understanding the effectiveness of nutrition sensitive programming. It supports both long and short-term training programs in the realm of nutrition, agriculture and health.


Nepal
<< back to world map
OverviewResearch ActivitiesRelated PublicationsResearch BriefsReportsPresentationsLocal Contact

The Nutrition Innovation Lab focuses on three major over-arching research questions:

  1. In what ways do investments in agriculture achieve significant measurable impacts in nutrition? As a corollary, can pathways to impact be empirically demonstrated?
  2. How can large-scale programs best incorporate such knowledge into cost-effective multi-sectoral interventions aimed at improving nutrition?
  3. How can policy and program implementation processes be enhanced to support both nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive actions?

These three overarching questions form the framework for a host of nested studies that are generating concrete evidence that responds to priority developing country concerns while supporting the goals of USAID’s Feed the Future initiative. The research is pursued in ways that seek to enhance policymaker understanding of how to overcome constraints in policy and program design and implementation, while also producing global public goods in the form of new scientific knowledge of relevant and diverse settings

PoSHAN

Called the PoSHAN study (Policy and Science for Health, Agriculture and Nutrition), the research in Nepal has multiple elements that are framed around an observational cohort study. The study involves systematic stratified random sampling across three agro-ecological zones (Hills, Mountains and Terai) of 21 Village Development Committees or VDCs (1 per district) and 63 wards (3 per ward).

Read more about PoSHAN

PoSHAN

Called the PoSHAN study (Policy and Science for Health, Agriculture and Nutrition), the research in Nepal has multiple elements that are framed around an observational cohort study. The study involves systematic stratified random sampling across three agro-ecological zones (Hills, Mountains and Terai) of 21 Village Development Committees or VDCs (1 per district) and 63 wards (3 per ward).

Read more about PoSHAN

Diet diversity and iron status of pregnant women and their offspring

Led by: Harvard University School of Public Health

Harvard SPH partners together with Tribhuvan University’s Institute of Medicine are working to improve the ability to measure diet and link it to indicators of malnutrition among children and women in a Nepali context, capture shifts in dietary consumption that may be happening in a peri-urban setting in Nepal, and build applied skills and knowledge related to nutrition and nutritional epidemiology at all levels.

Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ)

Led by: Harvard University School of Public Health

Collaborating with Heifer International, Tufts University, the Institute of Medicine at Tribhuvhan University and University of Bergen, Norway, researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health are field testing a tool called the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ) in the context of a remote rural setting in the far Western region of Nepal. The tool is used to assess the developmental progress of children between the ages of one month and 5 1/2 years and has two main virtues: it’s ease-of-use and parent-centric approach. The main goal of the study is to test whether a locally adapted tool (translated into Nepali and adapted to the context of rural Nepal) can be administered by trained enumerators in a village setting at the homes of households. If successful the tool can be used to broaden our understanding of the linkages between nutritional and exposures and early childhood development. Data collection is complete and researchers are currently analyzing the data.

AflaCohort Study

Led by: Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy

Collaborating with Helen Keller International, the Patan Academy of Health Sciences and the Government of Nepal Ministry of Health and Population Department of Health Services Child Health Division, Tufts University researchers launched the AflaCohort study on December 6th, 2015 in 17 VDCs of the Banke district in the the mid Western region of Nepal. This birth cohort aims to further the understanding of the causal relationship between past and current aflatoxin exposure (maternal and infant), birth outcomes and length-for-age in Nepali infants and young children. The study will also seek to validate the use of low cost data collection methods (e.g. dried blood spots versus venous blood samples) for aflatoxin analysis.

Child Nutrition in Nepal: The Effects of Community Development Interventions and Nutrition Education on Health and Nutrition Outcomes

Led by : Heifer International Nepal

During years 1 and 2 of the Nutrition Innovation Lab baseline and basic longitudinal data have been collected assessing the success of Heifer International Nepal’s community livestock programming approach on improving nutritional outcomes in intervention groups. Based upon positive results from the initial project, research will continue to build a larger database of longitudinal data, introduce a nutrition curriculum, and understand more clearly how provision of livestock, animal husbandry training, and building of social capital each interact with the improvements in health and nutritional status being observed in the study population.[/su_posts]

Vitamin B-12 status in infancy is positively associated with development and cognitive functioning 5 y later in Nepalese children

We measured the associations between vitamin B-12 status in infancy (2–12 mo) and the development and cognitive functioning in Nepalese children 5 y later. Vitamin B-12 status was assessed in infancy with the use of plasma cobalamin, total homocysteine (tHcy), and methylmalonic acid (MMA). At 5 y of age, we measured development with the use of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, 3rd edition (ASQ- 3), and cognitive functioning by using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, 2nd edition (NEPSY II), in 320 children. In regression models, we estimated Continue reading →
0 comments

Erythrocyte fatty acid composition of Nepal breast-fed infants

Essential fatty acids play a critical role in the growth and development of infants, but little is known about the fatty acid status of populations in low-income countries. The objective was to describe the fatty acid composition of red blood cells (RBC) in breastfeed Nepali infants and a subsample of their mothers and to identify the main sources of fatty acids in the mother’s diet, as well as the fatty acid composition of breast milk.
0 comments

Individual, household, and community level risk factors of stunting in children younger than 5 years: Findings from a national surveillance system in Nepal

Stunting (height‐for‐age z‐score [HAZ] < −2) affects close to a quarter of the world’s child population younger than 5 years, with South Asia bearing over half of the childhood‐stunting burden. Stunting both reflects chronic undernutrition and sustained resource‐constrained environments and is often associated with an increased risk of impaired cognition, reduced economic productivity, poor health outcomes throughout the life cycle, and poor survival overall. In recent years, efforts to prevent stunting have been among the leading priorities of governments, donors, and civil society organizations, reflected Continue reading →
0 comments

Markets, transportation infrastructure and food prices in Nepal

We study transportation infrastructure and food markets in Nepal over the period 2002 to 2010, combining monthly price data from 37 local and regional markets and 7 Indian border markets. We use a series of autoregressive models to study price determination, spatial and temporal price transmission, and price variance. We account for district-level agricultural production, correcting for bi-directional causality between output and prices using ground station rainfall data. In addition, to test hypotheses regarding the importance of transportation infrastructure we incorporate information on road and Continue reading →
0 comments

Climatic conditions and child height: Sex-specific vulnerability and the protective effects of sanitation and food markets in Nepal

Abstract Environmental conditions in early life are known to have impacts on later health outcomes, but causal mechanisms and potential remedies have been difficult to discern. This paper uses the Nepal Demographic and Health Surveys of 2006 and 2011, combined with earlier NASA satellite observations of variation in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) at each child’s location and time of birth to identify the trimesters of gestation and periods of infancy when climate variation is linked to attained height later in life. We find Continue reading →
0 comments

Optimizing the Multisectoral Nutrition Policy Cycle: A Systems Perspective

Based on the data collected in Uganda, Nepal, and Ethiopia, the papers included in this supplement fill a critical gap in evidence regarding multisectoral National Nutrition Action Plans. The studies offer new data and new thinking on how and why governance, effective financial decentralization, and improved accountability all matter for nutrition actions in low-income countries. This introductory paper offers an overview of the current state of evidence and thinking on the multisectoral nutrition policy cycle, including how governance and financing support that process. It also Continue reading →
0 comments

Implementing Multisector Nutrition Programs in Ethiopia and Nepal: Challenges and Opportunities From a Stakeholder Perspective

Effective governance is essential for effective nutrition program implementation. There are additional challenges in launching multisector plans to enhance nutritional status. The present study compares the challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia and Nepal in designing and implementing a multisector plan for nutrition. A semi-quantitative questionnaire with open-ended questions was used to solicit information from senior national-level policy officials and other key stakeholders. The nature of the major nutrition problems in each country was similar; these include malnutrition (particularly stunting), food insecurity, and micronutrient malnutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments

Prioritizing and Funding Nepal’s Multisector Nutrition Plan

Nepal has a long tradition of designing good multisectoral nutrition policy. However, success of policy implementation has varied. More evidence on how to successfully carry out multisector nutrition policy is needed. This study used a mixed-method longitudinal design to track qualitative and budgetary changes related to MSNP processes nationally as well as in 3 districts. Qualitative changes in each study area were assessed through interviews, observation, news content, and meeting notes. Changes in allocations and expenditures were calculated based on budget documents, work plans, and validation Continue reading →
0 comments

Measuring Nutrition Governance: An Analysis of Commitment, Capability, and Collaboration in Nepal

Global commitments to nutrition have supported calls for better evidence to support effective investments at national level. However, too little attention has so far been paid to the role of governance in achieving impacts. This article explores the ways by which the commitment and capabilities of policy implementers affect collaborative efforts for achieving nutrition goals.
0 comments

Overcoming the Limits of Evidence on Effective Multisectoral Nutrition Policy

The multisectoral approach has evolved as a popular instrument to attain nutrition goals and targets. But as policy makers, we need timely, relevant, and accurate information in order to effectively support these plans. This commentary comes from the members of the nutrition secretariats at the National Planning Commission in Nepal and the Office of the Prime Minister in Uganda on availability and use of evidence and the nutrition policy cycle. As has been highlighted in this supplement, some of the challenges we have faced include Continue reading →
0 comments

Low Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Nepalese Infants Despite High Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Their Mothers

Describing vitamin D status and its predictors in various populations is important in order to target public health measures. Objectives: To describe the status and predictors of vitamin D status in healthy Nepalese mothers and infants. Methods: 500 randomly selected Nepalese mother and infant pairs were included in a cross-sectional study. Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were measured by LC-MS/MS and multiple linear regression analyses were used to identify predictors of vitamin D status. Results: Among the infants, the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency (25(OH)D <50 nmol/L) Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 3 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the third panel survey.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Report- Year 6

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition for the fiscal year 2016 starting October 2015 through September 2016 (“Y6”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the links between aflatoxins Continue reading →
0 comments

Infrastructure mitigates the sensitivity of child growth to local agriculture and rainfall in Nepal and Uganda

Incorporating agriculture into nutrition policy requires an understanding of how agricultural performance, rainfall, and the economic and physical environments in which children reside relate to linear growth and weight gain. This paper combines anthropometric data from children below the age of 5 y in Nepal and Uganda with rainfall data and other information to measure these connections. Anthropometric outcomes are positively correlated with rainfall prior to birth, during the first year, and during agricultural growing seasons preceding child measurement. High rainfall is found to be Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 2 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the second panel survey conducted between May – July 2014.
0 comments

Duration of programme exposure is associated with improved outcomes in nutrition and health: the case for longer project cycles from intervention experience in rural Nepal

Economic growth and poverty reduction are not always sufficient to improve child health and nutritional status. Heifer International promotes livestock introduction and related training for community development and poverty alleviation. These programmes do not directly address child health or nutrition. To determine effects of its activities on these important outcomes, Heifer conducted a 4-year longitudinal investigation in rural Nepal. The intervention was associated with significantly improved child anthropometry (related to the duration of intervention exposure) and child health. Heifer activities represent a viable ‘nutrition sensitive’ Continue reading →
0 comments

What Does It Cost to Improve Household Diets in Nepal? Using the Cost of the Diet Method to Model Lowest Cost Dietary Changes

In Nepal, limited availability and affordability of nutritious foods contribute to malnutrition. To identify nutrient deficiencies in commonly consumed diets and model lowest cost changes that could improve diet quality in 3 agroecological zones of Nepal. The modeled lowest cost diet commonly eaten in 3 Nepalese communities lacks key nutrients. Policies and interventions that increase market availability and consumption of vitamin B12- and calcium-rich fish and dark green leafy vegetables could improve local diets, particularly in the mountains and hills.
0 comments

Aflacohort Study Field Operations and Accomplishments

This presentation was delivered to USAID by Ashish Pokharel in August, 2016 as an update and overview of the Nepal Aflatoxin birth study (Aflacohort), daily procedures, plus some of the early findings.
0 comments

Climatic Conditions and Child Height: Sex-Specific Vulnerability and the Protective Effects of Sanitation and Food Markets in Nepal

This presentation was given at the AAEA Annual Meeting on August 2, 2016 by Prajula Mulmi.
0 comments

Learning Lab Indicators of Food Insecurity and Malnutrition

This presentation was delivered by Drs. Shibani Ghosh and William Masters June 20-21, 2016 at the ANH Academy Week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
0 comments

Child dietary quality in rural Nepal: Effectiveness of a community-level development intervention

Nutrition-sensitive agricultural interventions have the potential to improve child dietary quality in rural households, as evidenced by a growing body of work which concurrently measures agricultural and nutrition indicators. Our objective was to investigate whether children in rural farming communities of Nepal participating in a community-level, nutrition-sensitive development intervention had improved dietary quality compared with children living in non-participating matched rural communities. Six rural communities of Nepal where livelihoods were predominantly agricultural were selected to participate in the phased implementation of a community-level development intervention Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin Status among Breastfed Infants in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Vitamin deficiencies are known to be common among infants residing in low- and middle-income countries but relatively few studies have assessed several biochemical parameters simultaneously. The objective of the study was to describe the status of vitamins (A, D, E, B6, B12 and folate) in breastfed infants. We measured the plasma concentrations of trans retinol, 25 hydroxy vitamin D, α-tocopherol, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate, cobalamin, folate, methylmalonic acid, homocysteine, hemoglobin and C-reactive protein from 467 randomly selected infants. One in five (22%) was deficient in at least Continue reading →
0 comments

Head Growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health, and diet

Background: Brain development in early childhood is a key determinant of later cognition, social achievement and educational success. Head circumference (HC) measurements are a simple method to assess brain growth, yet reports of these measurements are uncommon in nutritional surveys of undernourished children. To cite this article: Laurie C. Miller, Neena Joshi, Mahendra Lohani, Rupa Singh, Nisha Bhatta, Beatrice Rogers, Jeffrey K. Griffiths, Shibani Ghosh, Shubh Mahato, Padma Singh & Patrick Webb (2016): Head growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health Continue reading →
0 comments

The prevalence of anemia and iron deficiency is more common in breastfed infants than their mothers in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Iron deficiency anemia is a widespread public health problem, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Maternal iron status around and during pregnancy may influence infant iron status. We examined multiple biomarkers to determine the prevalence of iron deficiency and anemia among breastfed infants and explored its relationship with maternal and infant characteristics in Bhaktapur, Nepal.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 5

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2015 starting October 2014 through September 2015 (“Y5”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Agriculture, Food Security, Diet and Nutrition in Nepal: Insights from the USAID Nutrition Innovation Lab

This presentation was delivered by Sudeep Shrestha in November 2015 at the International Conference on Maternal and Child Nutrition in Sri Lanka.
0 comments

Nutrition-Specific and Nutrition-Sensitive Interventions: Implications for Programming in Nepal

This presentation was delivered by Patrick Webb on Oct. 9, 2015 at the Seminar Institute of Medicine.
0 comments

Agricultural Diversity and Child Stunting in Nepal

This article investigates empirical connections between agriculture and child nutrition in Nepal. We augment the standard approach to explaining child nutrition outcomes by including information about household level agricultural production characteristics, including indicators of agricultural diversity. Data from the 2010/2011 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) are used in a series of regression models to explain stunting outcomes and variation in height-for-age Z-scores among 1,769 children 0–59 months of age. Results highlight the relative importance of overall agricultural yields, specific crop groups, and the consumption of own-production as factors correlated Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Abstract- Objectives: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments

Underlying Vitamin A Status Affects the Association between Dark Green Leafy Vegetable Intake and Serum Retinol and β-Carotene Concetrations among Pregnant Women in Nepal

This poster presentation examines levels of Vitamin A and B Carotene in pregnant women in Kathmandu Nepal.
0 comments

Environmental Variability and Child Growth in Nepal

Data from the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Survey are combined with satellite remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data to evaluate whether interannual variability in weather is associated with child health. For stunting, we focus on children older than 24 months of age. NDVI anomaly averages during cropping months are evaluated during the year before birth, the year of birth, and the second year after birth. For wasting, we assess children under 59 months of age and relate growth to NDVI averages for the Continue reading →
0 comments

Valuing Women’s Time in Nutrition

Dr. Webb presents in London with the APPG. With renewed concerns for malnutrition in the context of post-2015 development framework, it is important to consider the directions taken by nutrition research and policy. Recent work in the areas of agriculture, nutrition and health is seeking to shed light on how agriculture can improve nutrition and health. Women are seen as important players in many of the pathways linking agriculture and nutrition. Women’s participation in agricultural work can contribute to nutrition via increased incomes, but it Continue reading →
0 comments

Strengthening Policy Actions and Governance for Nutrition

This is the joint Nutrition Lab/SPRING presentation to USAID on common research activities in Nepal and Uganda regarding policy and governance for nutrition.  It was presented May 5th, 2015 in Washington DC.
0 comments

Urbanization, market development and malnutrition in farm households: evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys, 1986–2011

A principal effect of agricultural productivity growth is to accelerate urbanization by supplying food, labor and other resources to urban services and industry. Towns and cities may also grow for their own reasons, pulling food and resources out of rural areas. Whether pushed or pulled, the development of markets creates new opportunities for agricultural households. This study tests whether, on balance, proximity to older towns and cities has improved or worsened malnutrition among farm households in 43,850 survey clusters in 46 developing countries between 1986 Continue reading →
0 comments

Agricultural policy for improved nutrition in Africa and Asia: evidence to guide the US Government’s investments in food security

The roundtable process was designed to complement numerous past and ongoing efforts to assemble and disseminate rigorous evidence on how agricultural change can best help to improve international nutrition, beginning with the first Lancet Maternal and Child Nutrition series in 2008 and its follow-up in 2013 and other systematic reviews (Webb and Kennedy 2014), as well as assessments from private groups such as the Copenhagen Consensus (2014) and the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (2014), international organizations such as the World Continue reading →
0 comments

Mycotoxin Exposure among Pregnant Women: Examining Knowledge, Practices, Diet Quality and Effects on Birth Outcomes in Banke, Nepal

The goal of aim 1 is to qualitatively assess existing agricultural and food storage knowledge and practices and quantitatively assess if knowledge and practices are associated with maternal aflatoxins exposure levels.
0 comments

Low dietary diversity and micronutrient adequacy among lactating women in a peri-urban area of Nepal

The main objectives were to assess the adequacy of the micronutrient intakes of lactating women in a peri-urban area in Nepal and to describe the relationships between micronutrient intake adequacy, dietary diversity and sociodemographic variables. Breast-feeding is one of the most important factors that can influence child health in low- and middle-income countries. During lactation, women have increased requirements for energy and micronutrients. An inadequate maternal intake of certain nutrients during this period may have consequences for both the mother’s health and nutritional status, as well as those of the breast-fed Continue reading →
0 comments

The 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition: Connecting the Evidence To Action

Briefing from the 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium The Nutrition Innovation Lab’s partner, Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with the Institute of Medicine and the Nepal Agriculture Research Council, hosted its 3rd annual Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal on November 18-20, 2014. The question driving this symposium was simple: how can agriculture improve household food security and nutrition outcomes? Yet the work of understanding the agriculture to nutrition pathway is complex. Building sustainable systems that promote food security, nutrition, and health in Nepal requires the utilization of high-quality, empirical evidence. The Continue reading →
0 comments

2014 Scientific Symposium Presentations

AGRICULTURE, FOOD SYSTEMS AND, NUTRITION: CONNECTING THE EVIDENCE FOR ACTION CO-Hosted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Community Medicine and Public Health– Institute of Medicine & the Nepal Agricultural Research Council.   Day 1 Oral Presentations Alan Dangour Time to move from Agriculture to Action in Agriculture and Health Akriti Singh Maternal Access to Information: Can Bhanchhin Aama Influence Child Diets? Chandra Thapa Bridging the Gap: Food Security Response Analysis and Planning Based on the Nepal Food Security Monitoring System (NEKSAP) Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies

The 2014 Annual Scientific Symposium in Katmandu Nepal, Jamie Dorsey’s poster presentation entitled, “Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies”.
0 comments

Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Erin Bihel entitled, “Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal”
0 comments

Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Claire Fitch entitled, “Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies”
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Laboratory:Nepal Research and Capacity-Building Activities

This presentation was given by Maura Mack as an update to USAID in Nepal on the nature of the Nutrition Innovation Lab’s work and progress in Nepal, November, 2014.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 4

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2014 starting October 2013 through September 2014 (“Y4”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Determinants of Stunting and Severe Stunting among under-fives: Evidence from the 2011 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey

Stunting remains a major public health concern in Nepal as it increases the risk of illness, irreversible body damage and mortality in children. Public health planners can reshape and redesign new interventions to reduce stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than 5 years in this country by examining their determinants. Hence, this study identifies factors associated with stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than five years in Nepal.
0 comments

Challenges to Turning Nutrition & Agriculture Research into Action: A Case Study of NGO Research Uptake in Nepal

In Nepal, despite improvements in poverty reduction and health services, malnutrition persists. 41% of children under age five are stunted, 29% of children are underweight, and 18% of women of reproductive age are malnourished1. The Government of Nepal, research institutions, and local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are working to improve nutrition through nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions such as agricultural programs that increase production, productivity and income; improving water, sanitation, and hygiene practices; and encouraging more equitable food allocation within the household2. The involvement of Continue reading →
0 comments

Research Brief #18: Food prices, their determinants and connections to child nutrition in Nepal

A majority of Nepalese households are net buyers of food and depend on markets for their food purchases (CBS 2011). As a result, market performance and food prices directly influence levels of household consumption. These, in turn, can influence nutrition outcomes. Given the potentially deleterious effects of high food prices on child nutrition outcomes in food-purchasing households, one of the important pathways to reducing child malnutrition rates over time is likely to be by increasing market efficiency and reducing food prices. A number of studies Continue reading →
0 comments

A Qualitative Look at the Barriers to Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Agriculture and Nutrition Research in Nepal

Nepal’s burden of malnutrition and the dominance of agricultural livelihoods highlight the importance of understanding the pathways from agricultural production to nutritional outcomes and employing interventions that incorporate food production and consumption. A need for improved understanding of such pathways and the impacts of nutrition-sensitive interventions has encouraged related research initiatives in Nepal. Agriculture research has often been conducted separately from nutrition research, despite the inherent relationship between agriculture and nutrition in rural Nepal’s food-producing households and increasing recognition that agricultural production directly influences food Continue reading →
0 comments
Henjum et al 2014

Iron deficiency is uncommon among lactating women in urban Nepal, despite a high risk of inadequate dietary iron intake

The main objective of the present study was to examine the association between dietary Fe intake and dietary predictors of Fe status and Hb concentration among lactating women in Bhaktapur, Nepal. We included 500 randomly selected lactating women in a cross-sectional survey. Dietary information was obtained through three interactive 24 h recall interviews including personal recipes. Concentrations of Hb and plasma ferritin and soluble transferrin receptors were measured. The daily median Fe intake from food was 17·5 mg, and 70% of the women were found Continue reading →
0 comments

LCIRAH Presentation: PoSHAN policy process

This presentation was given by Dr. Webb at the LCIRAH conference in June of 2014 and discusses nutrition policy using PoSHAN data.
0 comments
Cover Image: Research in Asia: Approach, Methods and Protocols

Research Briefing #14: Research in Asia: Approach, methods, And Protocols

At the 19th International Congress on Nutrition in Bangkok (in 2009), the United Nations’ Standing Committee on Nutrition concluded that “there is an urgent need to provide evidence- based information on food-based strategies and systems in order to make a case for their promotion. A series of scientific articles on food security interventions for nutrition should therefore be published to complement the public health interventions promoted by the Lancet Series [of 2008]. Sustainable food security approaches to nutrition require systemic, multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral approaches taking Continue reading →
0 comments

Overview of, and Opportunities for Collaboration with, the Nutrition Innovation Lab

Given as a webinar for USAID, this presentation details the work and mission of the Nutrition Innovation Lab, why our work is important, and possibilities for collaboration with other Innovation Labs.
0 comments

The Role of Horticulture and Aquaculture in Addressing Nutrition Needs

This presentation examines possible solutions for malnutrition sourced from the horticulture and aquaculture sectors, Patrick Webb, March 2014
0 comments
Cover Image:Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Sympoium August 13-14 2013

Research Briefing #13: Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd annual scientific symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway. Featuring 15 oral and 11 poster presentations, the two day meeting was attended by approximately 250 participants who represented researchers, field practitioners, government policymakers, donors (including the USAID mission) and 40 students from various Nepali institutions of higher education. The symposium included two keynote Continue reading →
0 comments

No Rice in the House: Risk Factors and Association with Nutritional Status of Nepalese 9-13 year olds

The aim of the study is to examine the association between household characteristics and “rise insecurity” as a measure of food insecurity and to explore the relationship between rice insecurity and the nutritional status of children 9-13 years of age in a rural population in Sarlahi District of Nepal. Read the Document
0 comments
Cover Image: The prize and the price of good nutrition

The prize and the price of good nutrition

The global burden of disease is shifting rapidly. While in 1990, the top-ranked contributor to the global burden was child underweight, twenty years later we find that cancers and circulatory diseases contribute the most– accounting for 19% of global disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), with about a third of the total deriving from other non- communicable diseases (NCDs), including chronic respiratory, digestive, neurological, mental, endocrine, and other disorders1. By 2010, child underweight had dropped to 8th place in the ranking of contributors to the overall disease Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Baseline Report

Baseline findings of this nationally representative study reveal variations in nutritional status, household food security, agricultural production and practices, and sanitation between the agro ecological zones of Nepal. Undernutrition in under-five children and women was found to be consistently worse in the terai (with the exception of under-five stunting rates being approximately 36%). Household food insecurity was 40% across the PoSHAN sample during the May – July 2013 season; with terai households found to be least food insecure. The utilization of innovative agricultural practices were Continue reading →
0 comments

2nd Annual Scientific Symposium Proceedings, August 13-14, 2013

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway.
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Finding Pathways to Accelerate Nutritional Impacts

John Hopkins’ PoSHAN review at the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium, August 2013.
0 comments
Cover Image: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

Research Brief #12: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

While best programming methods have been identified for many of the essential nutrition actions–e.g., breastfeeding, micronutrient tablet provision–the way forward for improving complementary feeding practices is much less clear, as is agriculture’s contribution. The vast majority of children in Nepal do not receive a minimum acceptable diet, and behavior change for complementary feeding within households has been difficult to achieve at scale. An underestimated constraint on child feeding is that the child’s food preparation takes a lot of mothers’ time, which is often already limited Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Research Brief #11: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Recently, there have been renewed calls for the integration of nutrition, health, and agriculture to improve the nutritional status of populations. Whereas these sectors previously operated in separate realms, various frameworks have been propounded to highlight the importance of a multi‐sectoral approach and to establish links between the sectors to impact nutritional status. The 2008 Lancet Nutrition Series and the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) framework have provided evidence‐based interventions that have largely guided efforts at an integrated approach to address maternal and child undernutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

Research Brief #10: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

We combine three distinct datasets to study the connections between agriculture and child health in Nepal. Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from 2006 are merged on the basis of common GIS data points with satellite remote sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) composites. Using these data we explore the association between the NDVI, a monthly proxy for agricultural production, and nutrition outcomes in children under age 5. We also employ nationally representative data from the 2003‐2004 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) to assess connections Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition Degrees In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

Research Brief #9: Nutrition Degree Programs In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

The Government of Nepal (GoN) has made a major commitment to improving the nutritional status of its population. For example, Nepal was one of the earliest countries to join the Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement. As a SUN country, Nepal has articulated a clear strategy for scaling up direct nutrition interventions as well as identifying multi-sector strategies for improving nutrition. To this end, GoN in September 2012 released its Multi-Sector Nutrition Plan (MSNP) that will guide the government’s investment for the period 2013 to 2017. Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Research Brief #8: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Globally, approximately 2.4 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation facilities, while 1.1 billion of those people practice open defecation (WHO 2012a; JMP 2012). Open defecation contributes substantially to the insanitary environment in which too many children grow up. About 2 million people die every year due to diarrheal diseases; most of them are children less than 5 years of age. Indeed, diarrhea is the second leading cause of death globally among children under 5, killing more young children than HIV/AIDS, malaria and Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

Research Brief #3: Nutrition CRSP Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (CRSP)- Asia through its partner, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, organized a two-day scientific symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, co-hosted by the Department of Community Medicine and Public Health at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The Nutrition CRSP is a multidisciplinary research consortium, which seeks to determine investments needed in agriculture, health and nutrition, institutional and human capacity development, and program development to achieve large-scale improvements in nutrition outcomes. The preliminary report of the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

Research Brief #2: Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

In the context of commitments shown by the Government of Nepal to addressing the country’s nutrition challenges, the National Planning Commission, in collaboration with the Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (N/CRSP), organized a two‐day stakeholders’ forum to discuss research priorities in nutrition, health, and agriculture. The forum (held on November 21/22 2011) brought together 115 participants from across Nepal’s Government (National Planning Commission, Ministry of Health and Population, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Local Development), as well as key Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-Pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Objective: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments
Cover Image: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Research Brief #1: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Collaborative Research Support Programs (CRSPs) represent a long‐standing form of US government funding for research that facilitates partnerships among US‐based and developing‐country scholars on agriculture, food and nutrition issues of policy relevance globally. The CRSPs receive core funding from the Bureau for Food Security of USAID, as well as buy‐ins from USAID Missions and other parts of the Agency. The Nutrition CRSP is the most recently‐established of 10 existing CRSPs. As the first in a series of summaries of key issues, aimed at communicating progress Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review Stock Taking Report Nepal’s Private Sector Initiatives, Strategies and Interests in Nutrition

There is growing interest of private sector in food industries. This has come because of growing urbanization and better transportation opportunities as food now can be sent from one location to another at a fast rate than in the past. Moreover, the knowledge of food processing and quality is growing, and private sector has cashed this desire through establishing food processing industries. Agricultural industries have been the focus of the government since the start of planning for development started from the mid 1950s. The interest Continue reading →
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 1

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2011 starting October 2010 through September 2011 (“Y1”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review of Food Security and Human Nutrition Issues in Nepal

Nepal faces multiple development challenges, including chronic and wide spread food insecurity and adult and child malnutrition. Due to population growth, agricultural stagnation and a range of institutional failures, the threat of a serious food crisis in Nepal is substantial. The recent scaling back of WFP assistance means that food security conditions in some parts of Nepal will undoubtedly worsen in the near future. This paper presents a brief review of topics and available evidence regarding food security, malnutrition and related subjects in Nepal. It is intended to document important source Continue reading →
0 comments

Stock taking Report Nutrition Sensitive Interventions for Agricultural Sector

Vulnerabilities to food insecurity are growing in Nepal. These vulnerabilities come from various factors – namely general decline in food production or agricultural growth, food price rise, seasonality in agricultural production, higher poverty rate in the food deficit areas, changes in food habits consuming junk food, especially in urban areas, lack of income and employment opportunities, lack of effective transportation for food distribution, especially in the hills and mountains, and chronic utilization problems such as inadequate access to health services, water and sanitation. Climate change Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin B-12 status in infancy is positively associated with development and cognitive functioning 5 y later in Nepalese children

We measured the associations between vitamin B-12 status in infancy (2–12 mo) and the development and cognitive functioning in Nepalese children 5 y later. Vitamin B-12 status was assessed in infancy with the use of plasma cobalamin, total homocysteine (tHcy), and methylmalonic acid (MMA). At 5 y of age, we measured development with the use of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, 3rd edition (ASQ- 3), and cognitive functioning by using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, 2nd edition (NEPSY II), in 320 children. In regression models, we estimated Continue reading →
0 comments

Erythrocyte fatty acid composition of Nepal breast-fed infants

Essential fatty acids play a critical role in the growth and development of infants, but little is known about the fatty acid status of populations in low-income countries. The objective was to describe the fatty acid composition of red blood cells (RBC) in breastfeed Nepali infants and a subsample of their mothers and to identify the main sources of fatty acids in the mother’s diet, as well as the fatty acid composition of breast milk.
0 comments

Individual, household, and community level risk factors of stunting in children younger than 5 years: Findings from a national surveillance system in Nepal

Stunting (height‐for‐age z‐score [HAZ] < −2) affects close to a quarter of the world’s child population younger than 5 years, with South Asia bearing over half of the childhood‐stunting burden. Stunting both reflects chronic undernutrition and sustained resource‐constrained environments and is often associated with an increased risk of impaired cognition, reduced economic productivity, poor health outcomes throughout the life cycle, and poor survival overall. In recent years, efforts to prevent stunting have been among the leading priorities of governments, donors, and civil society organizations, reflected Continue reading →
0 comments

Markets, transportation infrastructure and food prices in Nepal

We study transportation infrastructure and food markets in Nepal over the period 2002 to 2010, combining monthly price data from 37 local and regional markets and 7 Indian border markets. We use a series of autoregressive models to study price determination, spatial and temporal price transmission, and price variance. We account for district-level agricultural production, correcting for bi-directional causality between output and prices using ground station rainfall data. In addition, to test hypotheses regarding the importance of transportation infrastructure we incorporate information on road and Continue reading →
0 comments

Climatic conditions and child height: Sex-specific vulnerability and the protective effects of sanitation and food markets in Nepal

Abstract Environmental conditions in early life are known to have impacts on later health outcomes, but causal mechanisms and potential remedies have been difficult to discern. This paper uses the Nepal Demographic and Health Surveys of 2006 and 2011, combined with earlier NASA satellite observations of variation in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) at each child’s location and time of birth to identify the trimesters of gestation and periods of infancy when climate variation is linked to attained height later in life. We find Continue reading →
0 comments

Optimizing the Multisectoral Nutrition Policy Cycle: A Systems Perspective

Based on the data collected in Uganda, Nepal, and Ethiopia, the papers included in this supplement fill a critical gap in evidence regarding multisectoral National Nutrition Action Plans. The studies offer new data and new thinking on how and why governance, effective financial decentralization, and improved accountability all matter for nutrition actions in low-income countries. This introductory paper offers an overview of the current state of evidence and thinking on the multisectoral nutrition policy cycle, including how governance and financing support that process. It also Continue reading →
0 comments

Implementing Multisector Nutrition Programs in Ethiopia and Nepal: Challenges and Opportunities From a Stakeholder Perspective

Effective governance is essential for effective nutrition program implementation. There are additional challenges in launching multisector plans to enhance nutritional status. The present study compares the challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia and Nepal in designing and implementing a multisector plan for nutrition. A semi-quantitative questionnaire with open-ended questions was used to solicit information from senior national-level policy officials and other key stakeholders. The nature of the major nutrition problems in each country was similar; these include malnutrition (particularly stunting), food insecurity, and micronutrient malnutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments

Prioritizing and Funding Nepal’s Multisector Nutrition Plan

Nepal has a long tradition of designing good multisectoral nutrition policy. However, success of policy implementation has varied. More evidence on how to successfully carry out multisector nutrition policy is needed. This study used a mixed-method longitudinal design to track qualitative and budgetary changes related to MSNP processes nationally as well as in 3 districts. Qualitative changes in each study area were assessed through interviews, observation, news content, and meeting notes. Changes in allocations and expenditures were calculated based on budget documents, work plans, and validation Continue reading →
0 comments

Measuring Nutrition Governance: An Analysis of Commitment, Capability, and Collaboration in Nepal

Global commitments to nutrition have supported calls for better evidence to support effective investments at national level. However, too little attention has so far been paid to the role of governance in achieving impacts. This article explores the ways by which the commitment and capabilities of policy implementers affect collaborative efforts for achieving nutrition goals.
0 comments

Overcoming the Limits of Evidence on Effective Multisectoral Nutrition Policy

The multisectoral approach has evolved as a popular instrument to attain nutrition goals and targets. But as policy makers, we need timely, relevant, and accurate information in order to effectively support these plans. This commentary comes from the members of the nutrition secretariats at the National Planning Commission in Nepal and the Office of the Prime Minister in Uganda on availability and use of evidence and the nutrition policy cycle. As has been highlighted in this supplement, some of the challenges we have faced include Continue reading →
0 comments

Low Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Nepalese Infants Despite High Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Their Mothers

Describing vitamin D status and its predictors in various populations is important in order to target public health measures. Objectives: To describe the status and predictors of vitamin D status in healthy Nepalese mothers and infants. Methods: 500 randomly selected Nepalese mother and infant pairs were included in a cross-sectional study. Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were measured by LC-MS/MS and multiple linear regression analyses were used to identify predictors of vitamin D status. Results: Among the infants, the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency (25(OH)D <50 nmol/L) Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 3 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the third panel survey.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Report- Year 6

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition for the fiscal year 2016 starting October 2015 through September 2016 (“Y6”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the links between aflatoxins Continue reading →
0 comments

Infrastructure mitigates the sensitivity of child growth to local agriculture and rainfall in Nepal and Uganda

Incorporating agriculture into nutrition policy requires an understanding of how agricultural performance, rainfall, and the economic and physical environments in which children reside relate to linear growth and weight gain. This paper combines anthropometric data from children below the age of 5 y in Nepal and Uganda with rainfall data and other information to measure these connections. Anthropometric outcomes are positively correlated with rainfall prior to birth, during the first year, and during agricultural growing seasons preceding child measurement. High rainfall is found to be Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 2 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the second panel survey conducted between May – July 2014.
0 comments

Duration of programme exposure is associated with improved outcomes in nutrition and health: the case for longer project cycles from intervention experience in rural Nepal

Economic growth and poverty reduction are not always sufficient to improve child health and nutritional status. Heifer International promotes livestock introduction and related training for community development and poverty alleviation. These programmes do not directly address child health or nutrition. To determine effects of its activities on these important outcomes, Heifer conducted a 4-year longitudinal investigation in rural Nepal. The intervention was associated with significantly improved child anthropometry (related to the duration of intervention exposure) and child health. Heifer activities represent a viable ‘nutrition sensitive’ Continue reading →
0 comments

What Does It Cost to Improve Household Diets in Nepal? Using the Cost of the Diet Method to Model Lowest Cost Dietary Changes

In Nepal, limited availability and affordability of nutritious foods contribute to malnutrition. To identify nutrient deficiencies in commonly consumed diets and model lowest cost changes that could improve diet quality in 3 agroecological zones of Nepal. The modeled lowest cost diet commonly eaten in 3 Nepalese communities lacks key nutrients. Policies and interventions that increase market availability and consumption of vitamin B12- and calcium-rich fish and dark green leafy vegetables could improve local diets, particularly in the mountains and hills.
0 comments

Aflacohort Study Field Operations and Accomplishments

This presentation was delivered to USAID by Ashish Pokharel in August, 2016 as an update and overview of the Nepal Aflatoxin birth study (Aflacohort), daily procedures, plus some of the early findings.
0 comments

Climatic Conditions and Child Height: Sex-Specific Vulnerability and the Protective Effects of Sanitation and Food Markets in Nepal

This presentation was given at the AAEA Annual Meeting on August 2, 2016 by Prajula Mulmi.
0 comments

Learning Lab Indicators of Food Insecurity and Malnutrition

This presentation was delivered by Drs. Shibani Ghosh and William Masters June 20-21, 2016 at the ANH Academy Week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
0 comments

Child dietary quality in rural Nepal: Effectiveness of a community-level development intervention

Nutrition-sensitive agricultural interventions have the potential to improve child dietary quality in rural households, as evidenced by a growing body of work which concurrently measures agricultural and nutrition indicators. Our objective was to investigate whether children in rural farming communities of Nepal participating in a community-level, nutrition-sensitive development intervention had improved dietary quality compared with children living in non-participating matched rural communities. Six rural communities of Nepal where livelihoods were predominantly agricultural were selected to participate in the phased implementation of a community-level development intervention Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin Status among Breastfed Infants in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Vitamin deficiencies are known to be common among infants residing in low- and middle-income countries but relatively few studies have assessed several biochemical parameters simultaneously. The objective of the study was to describe the status of vitamins (A, D, E, B6, B12 and folate) in breastfed infants. We measured the plasma concentrations of trans retinol, 25 hydroxy vitamin D, α-tocopherol, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate, cobalamin, folate, methylmalonic acid, homocysteine, hemoglobin and C-reactive protein from 467 randomly selected infants. One in five (22%) was deficient in at least Continue reading →
0 comments

Head Growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health, and diet

Background: Brain development in early childhood is a key determinant of later cognition, social achievement and educational success. Head circumference (HC) measurements are a simple method to assess brain growth, yet reports of these measurements are uncommon in nutritional surveys of undernourished children. To cite this article: Laurie C. Miller, Neena Joshi, Mahendra Lohani, Rupa Singh, Nisha Bhatta, Beatrice Rogers, Jeffrey K. Griffiths, Shibani Ghosh, Shubh Mahato, Padma Singh & Patrick Webb (2016): Head growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health Continue reading →
0 comments

The prevalence of anemia and iron deficiency is more common in breastfed infants than their mothers in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Iron deficiency anemia is a widespread public health problem, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Maternal iron status around and during pregnancy may influence infant iron status. We examined multiple biomarkers to determine the prevalence of iron deficiency and anemia among breastfed infants and explored its relationship with maternal and infant characteristics in Bhaktapur, Nepal.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 5

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2015 starting October 2014 through September 2015 (“Y5”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Agriculture, Food Security, Diet and Nutrition in Nepal: Insights from the USAID Nutrition Innovation Lab

This presentation was delivered by Sudeep Shrestha in November 2015 at the International Conference on Maternal and Child Nutrition in Sri Lanka.
0 comments

Nutrition-Specific and Nutrition-Sensitive Interventions: Implications for Programming in Nepal

This presentation was delivered by Patrick Webb on Oct. 9, 2015 at the Seminar Institute of Medicine.
0 comments

Agricultural Diversity and Child Stunting in Nepal

This article investigates empirical connections between agriculture and child nutrition in Nepal. We augment the standard approach to explaining child nutrition outcomes by including information about household level agricultural production characteristics, including indicators of agricultural diversity. Data from the 2010/2011 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) are used in a series of regression models to explain stunting outcomes and variation in height-for-age Z-scores among 1,769 children 0–59 months of age. Results highlight the relative importance of overall agricultural yields, specific crop groups, and the consumption of own-production as factors correlated Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Abstract- Objectives: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments

Underlying Vitamin A Status Affects the Association between Dark Green Leafy Vegetable Intake and Serum Retinol and β-Carotene Concetrations among Pregnant Women in Nepal

This poster presentation examines levels of Vitamin A and B Carotene in pregnant women in Kathmandu Nepal.
0 comments

Environmental Variability and Child Growth in Nepal

Data from the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Survey are combined with satellite remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data to evaluate whether interannual variability in weather is associated with child health. For stunting, we focus on children older than 24 months of age. NDVI anomaly averages during cropping months are evaluated during the year before birth, the year of birth, and the second year after birth. For wasting, we assess children under 59 months of age and relate growth to NDVI averages for the Continue reading →
0 comments

Valuing Women’s Time in Nutrition

Dr. Webb presents in London with the APPG. With renewed concerns for malnutrition in the context of post-2015 development framework, it is important to consider the directions taken by nutrition research and policy. Recent work in the areas of agriculture, nutrition and health is seeking to shed light on how agriculture can improve nutrition and health. Women are seen as important players in many of the pathways linking agriculture and nutrition. Women’s participation in agricultural work can contribute to nutrition via increased incomes, but it Continue reading →
0 comments

Strengthening Policy Actions and Governance for Nutrition

This is the joint Nutrition Lab/SPRING presentation to USAID on common research activities in Nepal and Uganda regarding policy and governance for nutrition.  It was presented May 5th, 2015 in Washington DC.
0 comments

Urbanization, market development and malnutrition in farm households: evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys, 1986–2011

A principal effect of agricultural productivity growth is to accelerate urbanization by supplying food, labor and other resources to urban services and industry. Towns and cities may also grow for their own reasons, pulling food and resources out of rural areas. Whether pushed or pulled, the development of markets creates new opportunities for agricultural households. This study tests whether, on balance, proximity to older towns and cities has improved or worsened malnutrition among farm households in 43,850 survey clusters in 46 developing countries between 1986 Continue reading →
0 comments

Agricultural policy for improved nutrition in Africa and Asia: evidence to guide the US Government’s investments in food security

The roundtable process was designed to complement numerous past and ongoing efforts to assemble and disseminate rigorous evidence on how agricultural change can best help to improve international nutrition, beginning with the first Lancet Maternal and Child Nutrition series in 2008 and its follow-up in 2013 and other systematic reviews (Webb and Kennedy 2014), as well as assessments from private groups such as the Copenhagen Consensus (2014) and the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (2014), international organizations such as the World Continue reading →
0 comments

Mycotoxin Exposure among Pregnant Women: Examining Knowledge, Practices, Diet Quality and Effects on Birth Outcomes in Banke, Nepal

The goal of aim 1 is to qualitatively assess existing agricultural and food storage knowledge and practices and quantitatively assess if knowledge and practices are associated with maternal aflatoxins exposure levels.
0 comments

Low dietary diversity and micronutrient adequacy among lactating women in a peri-urban area of Nepal

The main objectives were to assess the adequacy of the micronutrient intakes of lactating women in a peri-urban area in Nepal and to describe the relationships between micronutrient intake adequacy, dietary diversity and sociodemographic variables. Breast-feeding is one of the most important factors that can influence child health in low- and middle-income countries. During lactation, women have increased requirements for energy and micronutrients. An inadequate maternal intake of certain nutrients during this period may have consequences for both the mother’s health and nutritional status, as well as those of the breast-fed Continue reading →
0 comments

The 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition: Connecting the Evidence To Action

Briefing from the 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium The Nutrition Innovation Lab’s partner, Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with the Institute of Medicine and the Nepal Agriculture Research Council, hosted its 3rd annual Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal on November 18-20, 2014. The question driving this symposium was simple: how can agriculture improve household food security and nutrition outcomes? Yet the work of understanding the agriculture to nutrition pathway is complex. Building sustainable systems that promote food security, nutrition, and health in Nepal requires the utilization of high-quality, empirical evidence. The Continue reading →
0 comments

2014 Scientific Symposium Presentations

AGRICULTURE, FOOD SYSTEMS AND, NUTRITION: CONNECTING THE EVIDENCE FOR ACTION CO-Hosted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Community Medicine and Public Health– Institute of Medicine & the Nepal Agricultural Research Council.   Day 1 Oral Presentations Alan Dangour Time to move from Agriculture to Action in Agriculture and Health Akriti Singh Maternal Access to Information: Can Bhanchhin Aama Influence Child Diets? Chandra Thapa Bridging the Gap: Food Security Response Analysis and Planning Based on the Nepal Food Security Monitoring System (NEKSAP) Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies

The 2014 Annual Scientific Symposium in Katmandu Nepal, Jamie Dorsey’s poster presentation entitled, “Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies”.
0 comments

Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Erin Bihel entitled, “Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal”
0 comments

Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Claire Fitch entitled, “Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies”
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Laboratory:Nepal Research and Capacity-Building Activities

This presentation was given by Maura Mack as an update to USAID in Nepal on the nature of the Nutrition Innovation Lab’s work and progress in Nepal, November, 2014.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 4

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2014 starting October 2013 through September 2014 (“Y4”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Determinants of Stunting and Severe Stunting among under-fives: Evidence from the 2011 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey

Stunting remains a major public health concern in Nepal as it increases the risk of illness, irreversible body damage and mortality in children. Public health planners can reshape and redesign new interventions to reduce stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than 5 years in this country by examining their determinants. Hence, this study identifies factors associated with stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than five years in Nepal.
0 comments

Challenges to Turning Nutrition & Agriculture Research into Action: A Case Study of NGO Research Uptake in Nepal

In Nepal, despite improvements in poverty reduction and health services, malnutrition persists. 41% of children under age five are stunted, 29% of children are underweight, and 18% of women of reproductive age are malnourished1. The Government of Nepal, research institutions, and local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are working to improve nutrition through nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions such as agricultural programs that increase production, productivity and income; improving water, sanitation, and hygiene practices; and encouraging more equitable food allocation within the household2. The involvement of Continue reading →
0 comments

Research Brief #18: Food prices, their determinants and connections to child nutrition in Nepal

A majority of Nepalese households are net buyers of food and depend on markets for their food purchases (CBS 2011). As a result, market performance and food prices directly influence levels of household consumption. These, in turn, can influence nutrition outcomes. Given the potentially deleterious effects of high food prices on child nutrition outcomes in food-purchasing households, one of the important pathways to reducing child malnutrition rates over time is likely to be by increasing market efficiency and reducing food prices. A number of studies Continue reading →
0 comments

A Qualitative Look at the Barriers to Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Agriculture and Nutrition Research in Nepal

Nepal’s burden of malnutrition and the dominance of agricultural livelihoods highlight the importance of understanding the pathways from agricultural production to nutritional outcomes and employing interventions that incorporate food production and consumption. A need for improved understanding of such pathways and the impacts of nutrition-sensitive interventions has encouraged related research initiatives in Nepal. Agriculture research has often been conducted separately from nutrition research, despite the inherent relationship between agriculture and nutrition in rural Nepal’s food-producing households and increasing recognition that agricultural production directly influences food Continue reading →
0 comments
Henjum et al 2014

Iron deficiency is uncommon among lactating women in urban Nepal, despite a high risk of inadequate dietary iron intake

The main objective of the present study was to examine the association between dietary Fe intake and dietary predictors of Fe status and Hb concentration among lactating women in Bhaktapur, Nepal. We included 500 randomly selected lactating women in a cross-sectional survey. Dietary information was obtained through three interactive 24 h recall interviews including personal recipes. Concentrations of Hb and plasma ferritin and soluble transferrin receptors were measured. The daily median Fe intake from food was 17·5 mg, and 70% of the women were found Continue reading →
0 comments

LCIRAH Presentation: PoSHAN policy process

This presentation was given by Dr. Webb at the LCIRAH conference in June of 2014 and discusses nutrition policy using PoSHAN data.
0 comments
Cover Image: Research in Asia: Approach, Methods and Protocols

Research Briefing #14: Research in Asia: Approach, methods, And Protocols

At the 19th International Congress on Nutrition in Bangkok (in 2009), the United Nations’ Standing Committee on Nutrition concluded that “there is an urgent need to provide evidence- based information on food-based strategies and systems in order to make a case for their promotion. A series of scientific articles on food security interventions for nutrition should therefore be published to complement the public health interventions promoted by the Lancet Series [of 2008]. Sustainable food security approaches to nutrition require systemic, multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral approaches taking Continue reading →
0 comments

Overview of, and Opportunities for Collaboration with, the Nutrition Innovation Lab

Given as a webinar for USAID, this presentation details the work and mission of the Nutrition Innovation Lab, why our work is important, and possibilities for collaboration with other Innovation Labs.
0 comments

The Role of Horticulture and Aquaculture in Addressing Nutrition Needs

This presentation examines possible solutions for malnutrition sourced from the horticulture and aquaculture sectors, Patrick Webb, March 2014
0 comments
Cover Image:Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Sympoium August 13-14 2013

Research Briefing #13: Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd annual scientific symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway. Featuring 15 oral and 11 poster presentations, the two day meeting was attended by approximately 250 participants who represented researchers, field practitioners, government policymakers, donors (including the USAID mission) and 40 students from various Nepali institutions of higher education. The symposium included two keynote Continue reading →
0 comments

No Rice in the House: Risk Factors and Association with Nutritional Status of Nepalese 9-13 year olds

The aim of the study is to examine the association between household characteristics and “rise insecurity” as a measure of food insecurity and to explore the relationship between rice insecurity and the nutritional status of children 9-13 years of age in a rural population in Sarlahi District of Nepal. Read the Document
0 comments
Cover Image: The prize and the price of good nutrition

The prize and the price of good nutrition

The global burden of disease is shifting rapidly. While in 1990, the top-ranked contributor to the global burden was child underweight, twenty years later we find that cancers and circulatory diseases contribute the most– accounting for 19% of global disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), with about a third of the total deriving from other non- communicable diseases (NCDs), including chronic respiratory, digestive, neurological, mental, endocrine, and other disorders1. By 2010, child underweight had dropped to 8th place in the ranking of contributors to the overall disease Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Baseline Report

Baseline findings of this nationally representative study reveal variations in nutritional status, household food security, agricultural production and practices, and sanitation between the agro ecological zones of Nepal. Undernutrition in under-five children and women was found to be consistently worse in the terai (with the exception of under-five stunting rates being approximately 36%). Household food insecurity was 40% across the PoSHAN sample during the May – July 2013 season; with terai households found to be least food insecure. The utilization of innovative agricultural practices were Continue reading →
0 comments

2nd Annual Scientific Symposium Proceedings, August 13-14, 2013

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway.
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Finding Pathways to Accelerate Nutritional Impacts

John Hopkins’ PoSHAN review at the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium, August 2013.
0 comments
Cover Image: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

Research Brief #12: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

While best programming methods have been identified for many of the essential nutrition actions–e.g., breastfeeding, micronutrient tablet provision–the way forward for improving complementary feeding practices is much less clear, as is agriculture’s contribution. The vast majority of children in Nepal do not receive a minimum acceptable diet, and behavior change for complementary feeding within households has been difficult to achieve at scale. An underestimated constraint on child feeding is that the child’s food preparation takes a lot of mothers’ time, which is often already limited Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Research Brief #11: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Recently, there have been renewed calls for the integration of nutrition, health, and agriculture to improve the nutritional status of populations. Whereas these sectors previously operated in separate realms, various frameworks have been propounded to highlight the importance of a multi‐sectoral approach and to establish links between the sectors to impact nutritional status. The 2008 Lancet Nutrition Series and the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) framework have provided evidence‐based interventions that have largely guided efforts at an integrated approach to address maternal and child undernutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

Research Brief #10: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

We combine three distinct datasets to study the connections between agriculture and child health in Nepal. Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from 2006 are merged on the basis of common GIS data points with satellite remote sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) composites. Using these data we explore the association between the NDVI, a monthly proxy for agricultural production, and nutrition outcomes in children under age 5. We also employ nationally representative data from the 2003‐2004 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) to assess connections Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition Degrees In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

Research Brief #9: Nutrition Degree Programs In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

The Government of Nepal (GoN) has made a major commitment to improving the nutritional status of its population. For example, Nepal was one of the earliest countries to join the Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement. As a SUN country, Nepal has articulated a clear strategy for scaling up direct nutrition interventions as well as identifying multi-sector strategies for improving nutrition. To this end, GoN in September 2012 released its Multi-Sector Nutrition Plan (MSNP) that will guide the government’s investment for the period 2013 to 2017. Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Research Brief #8: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Globally, approximately 2.4 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation facilities, while 1.1 billion of those people practice open defecation (WHO 2012a; JMP 2012). Open defecation contributes substantially to the insanitary environment in which too many children grow up. About 2 million people die every year due to diarrheal diseases; most of them are children less than 5 years of age. Indeed, diarrhea is the second leading cause of death globally among children under 5, killing more young children than HIV/AIDS, malaria and Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

Research Brief #3: Nutrition CRSP Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (CRSP)- Asia through its partner, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, organized a two-day scientific symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, co-hosted by the Department of Community Medicine and Public Health at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The Nutrition CRSP is a multidisciplinary research consortium, which seeks to determine investments needed in agriculture, health and nutrition, institutional and human capacity development, and program development to achieve large-scale improvements in nutrition outcomes. The preliminary report of the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

Research Brief #2: Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

In the context of commitments shown by the Government of Nepal to addressing the country’s nutrition challenges, the National Planning Commission, in collaboration with the Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (N/CRSP), organized a two‐day stakeholders’ forum to discuss research priorities in nutrition, health, and agriculture. The forum (held on November 21/22 2011) brought together 115 participants from across Nepal’s Government (National Planning Commission, Ministry of Health and Population, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Local Development), as well as key Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-Pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Objective: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments
Cover Image: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Research Brief #1: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Collaborative Research Support Programs (CRSPs) represent a long‐standing form of US government funding for research that facilitates partnerships among US‐based and developing‐country scholars on agriculture, food and nutrition issues of policy relevance globally. The CRSPs receive core funding from the Bureau for Food Security of USAID, as well as buy‐ins from USAID Missions and other parts of the Agency. The Nutrition CRSP is the most recently‐established of 10 existing CRSPs. As the first in a series of summaries of key issues, aimed at communicating progress Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review Stock Taking Report Nepal’s Private Sector Initiatives, Strategies and Interests in Nutrition

There is growing interest of private sector in food industries. This has come because of growing urbanization and better transportation opportunities as food now can be sent from one location to another at a fast rate than in the past. Moreover, the knowledge of food processing and quality is growing, and private sector has cashed this desire through establishing food processing industries. Agricultural industries have been the focus of the government since the start of planning for development started from the mid 1950s. The interest Continue reading →
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 1

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2011 starting October 2010 through September 2011 (“Y1”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review of Food Security and Human Nutrition Issues in Nepal

Nepal faces multiple development challenges, including chronic and wide spread food insecurity and adult and child malnutrition. Due to population growth, agricultural stagnation and a range of institutional failures, the threat of a serious food crisis in Nepal is substantial. The recent scaling back of WFP assistance means that food security conditions in some parts of Nepal will undoubtedly worsen in the near future. This paper presents a brief review of topics and available evidence regarding food security, malnutrition and related subjects in Nepal. It is intended to document important source Continue reading →
0 comments

Stock taking Report Nutrition Sensitive Interventions for Agricultural Sector

Vulnerabilities to food insecurity are growing in Nepal. These vulnerabilities come from various factors – namely general decline in food production or agricultural growth, food price rise, seasonality in agricultural production, higher poverty rate in the food deficit areas, changes in food habits consuming junk food, especially in urban areas, lack of income and employment opportunities, lack of effective transportation for food distribution, especially in the hills and mountains, and chronic utilization problems such as inadequate access to health services, water and sanitation. Climate change Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin B-12 status in infancy is positively associated with development and cognitive functioning 5 y later in Nepalese children

We measured the associations between vitamin B-12 status in infancy (2–12 mo) and the development and cognitive functioning in Nepalese children 5 y later. Vitamin B-12 status was assessed in infancy with the use of plasma cobalamin, total homocysteine (tHcy), and methylmalonic acid (MMA). At 5 y of age, we measured development with the use of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, 3rd edition (ASQ- 3), and cognitive functioning by using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, 2nd edition (NEPSY II), in 320 children. In regression models, we estimated Continue reading →
0 comments

Erythrocyte fatty acid composition of Nepal breast-fed infants

Essential fatty acids play a critical role in the growth and development of infants, but little is known about the fatty acid status of populations in low-income countries. The objective was to describe the fatty acid composition of red blood cells (RBC) in breastfeed Nepali infants and a subsample of their mothers and to identify the main sources of fatty acids in the mother’s diet, as well as the fatty acid composition of breast milk.
0 comments

Individual, household, and community level risk factors of stunting in children younger than 5 years: Findings from a national surveillance system in Nepal

Stunting (height‐for‐age z‐score [HAZ] < −2) affects close to a quarter of the world’s child population younger than 5 years, with South Asia bearing over half of the childhood‐stunting burden. Stunting both reflects chronic undernutrition and sustained resource‐constrained environments and is often associated with an increased risk of impaired cognition, reduced economic productivity, poor health outcomes throughout the life cycle, and poor survival overall. In recent years, efforts to prevent stunting have been among the leading priorities of governments, donors, and civil society organizations, reflected Continue reading →
0 comments

Markets, transportation infrastructure and food prices in Nepal

We study transportation infrastructure and food markets in Nepal over the period 2002 to 2010, combining monthly price data from 37 local and regional markets and 7 Indian border markets. We use a series of autoregressive models to study price determination, spatial and temporal price transmission, and price variance. We account for district-level agricultural production, correcting for bi-directional causality between output and prices using ground station rainfall data. In addition, to test hypotheses regarding the importance of transportation infrastructure we incorporate information on road and Continue reading →
0 comments

Climatic conditions and child height: Sex-specific vulnerability and the protective effects of sanitation and food markets in Nepal

Abstract Environmental conditions in early life are known to have impacts on later health outcomes, but causal mechanisms and potential remedies have been difficult to discern. This paper uses the Nepal Demographic and Health Surveys of 2006 and 2011, combined with earlier NASA satellite observations of variation in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) at each child’s location and time of birth to identify the trimesters of gestation and periods of infancy when climate variation is linked to attained height later in life. We find Continue reading →
0 comments

Optimizing the Multisectoral Nutrition Policy Cycle: A Systems Perspective

Based on the data collected in Uganda, Nepal, and Ethiopia, the papers included in this supplement fill a critical gap in evidence regarding multisectoral National Nutrition Action Plans. The studies offer new data and new thinking on how and why governance, effective financial decentralization, and improved accountability all matter for nutrition actions in low-income countries. This introductory paper offers an overview of the current state of evidence and thinking on the multisectoral nutrition policy cycle, including how governance and financing support that process. It also Continue reading →
0 comments

Implementing Multisector Nutrition Programs in Ethiopia and Nepal: Challenges and Opportunities From a Stakeholder Perspective

Effective governance is essential for effective nutrition program implementation. There are additional challenges in launching multisector plans to enhance nutritional status. The present study compares the challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia and Nepal in designing and implementing a multisector plan for nutrition. A semi-quantitative questionnaire with open-ended questions was used to solicit information from senior national-level policy officials and other key stakeholders. The nature of the major nutrition problems in each country was similar; these include malnutrition (particularly stunting), food insecurity, and micronutrient malnutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments

Prioritizing and Funding Nepal’s Multisector Nutrition Plan

Nepal has a long tradition of designing good multisectoral nutrition policy. However, success of policy implementation has varied. More evidence on how to successfully carry out multisector nutrition policy is needed. This study used a mixed-method longitudinal design to track qualitative and budgetary changes related to MSNP processes nationally as well as in 3 districts. Qualitative changes in each study area were assessed through interviews, observation, news content, and meeting notes. Changes in allocations and expenditures were calculated based on budget documents, work plans, and validation Continue reading →
0 comments

Measuring Nutrition Governance: An Analysis of Commitment, Capability, and Collaboration in Nepal

Global commitments to nutrition have supported calls for better evidence to support effective investments at national level. However, too little attention has so far been paid to the role of governance in achieving impacts. This article explores the ways by which the commitment and capabilities of policy implementers affect collaborative efforts for achieving nutrition goals.
0 comments

Overcoming the Limits of Evidence on Effective Multisectoral Nutrition Policy

The multisectoral approach has evolved as a popular instrument to attain nutrition goals and targets. But as policy makers, we need timely, relevant, and accurate information in order to effectively support these plans. This commentary comes from the members of the nutrition secretariats at the National Planning Commission in Nepal and the Office of the Prime Minister in Uganda on availability and use of evidence and the nutrition policy cycle. As has been highlighted in this supplement, some of the challenges we have faced include Continue reading →
0 comments

Low Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Nepalese Infants Despite High Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Their Mothers

Describing vitamin D status and its predictors in various populations is important in order to target public health measures. Objectives: To describe the status and predictors of vitamin D status in healthy Nepalese mothers and infants. Methods: 500 randomly selected Nepalese mother and infant pairs were included in a cross-sectional study. Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were measured by LC-MS/MS and multiple linear regression analyses were used to identify predictors of vitamin D status. Results: Among the infants, the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency (25(OH)D <50 nmol/L) Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 3 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the third panel survey.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Report- Year 6

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition for the fiscal year 2016 starting October 2015 through September 2016 (“Y6”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the links between aflatoxins Continue reading →
0 comments

Infrastructure mitigates the sensitivity of child growth to local agriculture and rainfall in Nepal and Uganda

Incorporating agriculture into nutrition policy requires an understanding of how agricultural performance, rainfall, and the economic and physical environments in which children reside relate to linear growth and weight gain. This paper combines anthropometric data from children below the age of 5 y in Nepal and Uganda with rainfall data and other information to measure these connections. Anthropometric outcomes are positively correlated with rainfall prior to birth, during the first year, and during agricultural growing seasons preceding child measurement. High rainfall is found to be Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 2 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the second panel survey conducted between May – July 2014.
0 comments

Duration of programme exposure is associated with improved outcomes in nutrition and health: the case for longer project cycles from intervention experience in rural Nepal

Economic growth and poverty reduction are not always sufficient to improve child health and nutritional status. Heifer International promotes livestock introduction and related training for community development and poverty alleviation. These programmes do not directly address child health or nutrition. To determine effects of its activities on these important outcomes, Heifer conducted a 4-year longitudinal investigation in rural Nepal. The intervention was associated with significantly improved child anthropometry (related to the duration of intervention exposure) and child health. Heifer activities represent a viable ‘nutrition sensitive’ Continue reading →
0 comments

What Does It Cost to Improve Household Diets in Nepal? Using the Cost of the Diet Method to Model Lowest Cost Dietary Changes

In Nepal, limited availability and affordability of nutritious foods contribute to malnutrition. To identify nutrient deficiencies in commonly consumed diets and model lowest cost changes that could improve diet quality in 3 agroecological zones of Nepal. The modeled lowest cost diet commonly eaten in 3 Nepalese communities lacks key nutrients. Policies and interventions that increase market availability and consumption of vitamin B12- and calcium-rich fish and dark green leafy vegetables could improve local diets, particularly in the mountains and hills.
0 comments

Aflacohort Study Field Operations and Accomplishments

This presentation was delivered to USAID by Ashish Pokharel in August, 2016 as an update and overview of the Nepal Aflatoxin birth study (Aflacohort), daily procedures, plus some of the early findings.
0 comments

Climatic Conditions and Child Height: Sex-Specific Vulnerability and the Protective Effects of Sanitation and Food Markets in Nepal

This presentation was given at the AAEA Annual Meeting on August 2, 2016 by Prajula Mulmi.
0 comments

Learning Lab Indicators of Food Insecurity and Malnutrition

This presentation was delivered by Drs. Shibani Ghosh and William Masters June 20-21, 2016 at the ANH Academy Week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
0 comments

Child dietary quality in rural Nepal: Effectiveness of a community-level development intervention

Nutrition-sensitive agricultural interventions have the potential to improve child dietary quality in rural households, as evidenced by a growing body of work which concurrently measures agricultural and nutrition indicators. Our objective was to investigate whether children in rural farming communities of Nepal participating in a community-level, nutrition-sensitive development intervention had improved dietary quality compared with children living in non-participating matched rural communities. Six rural communities of Nepal where livelihoods were predominantly agricultural were selected to participate in the phased implementation of a community-level development intervention Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin Status among Breastfed Infants in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Vitamin deficiencies are known to be common among infants residing in low- and middle-income countries but relatively few studies have assessed several biochemical parameters simultaneously. The objective of the study was to describe the status of vitamins (A, D, E, B6, B12 and folate) in breastfed infants. We measured the plasma concentrations of trans retinol, 25 hydroxy vitamin D, α-tocopherol, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate, cobalamin, folate, methylmalonic acid, homocysteine, hemoglobin and C-reactive protein from 467 randomly selected infants. One in five (22%) was deficient in at least Continue reading →
0 comments

Head Growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health, and diet

Background: Brain development in early childhood is a key determinant of later cognition, social achievement and educational success. Head circumference (HC) measurements are a simple method to assess brain growth, yet reports of these measurements are uncommon in nutritional surveys of undernourished children. To cite this article: Laurie C. Miller, Neena Joshi, Mahendra Lohani, Rupa Singh, Nisha Bhatta, Beatrice Rogers, Jeffrey K. Griffiths, Shibani Ghosh, Shubh Mahato, Padma Singh & Patrick Webb (2016): Head growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health Continue reading →
0 comments

The prevalence of anemia and iron deficiency is more common in breastfed infants than their mothers in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Iron deficiency anemia is a widespread public health problem, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Maternal iron status around and during pregnancy may influence infant iron status. We examined multiple biomarkers to determine the prevalence of iron deficiency and anemia among breastfed infants and explored its relationship with maternal and infant characteristics in Bhaktapur, Nepal.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 5

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2015 starting October 2014 through September 2015 (“Y5”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Agriculture, Food Security, Diet and Nutrition in Nepal: Insights from the USAID Nutrition Innovation Lab

This presentation was delivered by Sudeep Shrestha in November 2015 at the International Conference on Maternal and Child Nutrition in Sri Lanka.
0 comments

Nutrition-Specific and Nutrition-Sensitive Interventions: Implications for Programming in Nepal

This presentation was delivered by Patrick Webb on Oct. 9, 2015 at the Seminar Institute of Medicine.
0 comments

Agricultural Diversity and Child Stunting in Nepal

This article investigates empirical connections between agriculture and child nutrition in Nepal. We augment the standard approach to explaining child nutrition outcomes by including information about household level agricultural production characteristics, including indicators of agricultural diversity. Data from the 2010/2011 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) are used in a series of regression models to explain stunting outcomes and variation in height-for-age Z-scores among 1,769 children 0–59 months of age. Results highlight the relative importance of overall agricultural yields, specific crop groups, and the consumption of own-production as factors correlated Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Abstract- Objectives: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments

Underlying Vitamin A Status Affects the Association between Dark Green Leafy Vegetable Intake and Serum Retinol and β-Carotene Concetrations among Pregnant Women in Nepal

This poster presentation examines levels of Vitamin A and B Carotene in pregnant women in Kathmandu Nepal.
0 comments

Environmental Variability and Child Growth in Nepal

Data from the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Survey are combined with satellite remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data to evaluate whether interannual variability in weather is associated with child health. For stunting, we focus on children older than 24 months of age. NDVI anomaly averages during cropping months are evaluated during the year before birth, the year of birth, and the second year after birth. For wasting, we assess children under 59 months of age and relate growth to NDVI averages for the Continue reading →
0 comments

Valuing Women’s Time in Nutrition

Dr. Webb presents in London with the APPG. With renewed concerns for malnutrition in the context of post-2015 development framework, it is important to consider the directions taken by nutrition research and policy. Recent work in the areas of agriculture, nutrition and health is seeking to shed light on how agriculture can improve nutrition and health. Women are seen as important players in many of the pathways linking agriculture and nutrition. Women’s participation in agricultural work can contribute to nutrition via increased incomes, but it Continue reading →
0 comments

Strengthening Policy Actions and Governance for Nutrition

This is the joint Nutrition Lab/SPRING presentation to USAID on common research activities in Nepal and Uganda regarding policy and governance for nutrition.  It was presented May 5th, 2015 in Washington DC.
0 comments

Urbanization, market development and malnutrition in farm households: evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys, 1986–2011

A principal effect of agricultural productivity growth is to accelerate urbanization by supplying food, labor and other resources to urban services and industry. Towns and cities may also grow for their own reasons, pulling food and resources out of rural areas. Whether pushed or pulled, the development of markets creates new opportunities for agricultural households. This study tests whether, on balance, proximity to older towns and cities has improved or worsened malnutrition among farm households in 43,850 survey clusters in 46 developing countries between 1986 Continue reading →
0 comments

Agricultural policy for improved nutrition in Africa and Asia: evidence to guide the US Government’s investments in food security

The roundtable process was designed to complement numerous past and ongoing efforts to assemble and disseminate rigorous evidence on how agricultural change can best help to improve international nutrition, beginning with the first Lancet Maternal and Child Nutrition series in 2008 and its follow-up in 2013 and other systematic reviews (Webb and Kennedy 2014), as well as assessments from private groups such as the Copenhagen Consensus (2014) and the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (2014), international organizations such as the World Continue reading →
0 comments

Mycotoxin Exposure among Pregnant Women: Examining Knowledge, Practices, Diet Quality and Effects on Birth Outcomes in Banke, Nepal

The goal of aim 1 is to qualitatively assess existing agricultural and food storage knowledge and practices and quantitatively assess if knowledge and practices are associated with maternal aflatoxins exposure levels.
0 comments

Low dietary diversity and micronutrient adequacy among lactating women in a peri-urban area of Nepal

The main objectives were to assess the adequacy of the micronutrient intakes of lactating women in a peri-urban area in Nepal and to describe the relationships between micronutrient intake adequacy, dietary diversity and sociodemographic variables. Breast-feeding is one of the most important factors that can influence child health in low- and middle-income countries. During lactation, women have increased requirements for energy and micronutrients. An inadequate maternal intake of certain nutrients during this period may have consequences for both the mother’s health and nutritional status, as well as those of the breast-fed Continue reading →
0 comments

The 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition: Connecting the Evidence To Action

Briefing from the 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium The Nutrition Innovation Lab’s partner, Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with the Institute of Medicine and the Nepal Agriculture Research Council, hosted its 3rd annual Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal on November 18-20, 2014. The question driving this symposium was simple: how can agriculture improve household food security and nutrition outcomes? Yet the work of understanding the agriculture to nutrition pathway is complex. Building sustainable systems that promote food security, nutrition, and health in Nepal requires the utilization of high-quality, empirical evidence. The Continue reading →
0 comments

2014 Scientific Symposium Presentations

AGRICULTURE, FOOD SYSTEMS AND, NUTRITION: CONNECTING THE EVIDENCE FOR ACTION CO-Hosted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Community Medicine and Public Health– Institute of Medicine & the Nepal Agricultural Research Council.   Day 1 Oral Presentations Alan Dangour Time to move from Agriculture to Action in Agriculture and Health Akriti Singh Maternal Access to Information: Can Bhanchhin Aama Influence Child Diets? Chandra Thapa Bridging the Gap: Food Security Response Analysis and Planning Based on the Nepal Food Security Monitoring System (NEKSAP) Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies

The 2014 Annual Scientific Symposium in Katmandu Nepal, Jamie Dorsey’s poster presentation entitled, “Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies”.
0 comments

Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Erin Bihel entitled, “Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal”
0 comments

Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Claire Fitch entitled, “Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies”
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Laboratory:Nepal Research and Capacity-Building Activities

This presentation was given by Maura Mack as an update to USAID in Nepal on the nature of the Nutrition Innovation Lab’s work and progress in Nepal, November, 2014.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 4

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2014 starting October 2013 through September 2014 (“Y4”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Determinants of Stunting and Severe Stunting among under-fives: Evidence from the 2011 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey

Stunting remains a major public health concern in Nepal as it increases the risk of illness, irreversible body damage and mortality in children. Public health planners can reshape and redesign new interventions to reduce stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than 5 years in this country by examining their determinants. Hence, this study identifies factors associated with stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than five years in Nepal.
0 comments

Challenges to Turning Nutrition & Agriculture Research into Action: A Case Study of NGO Research Uptake in Nepal

In Nepal, despite improvements in poverty reduction and health services, malnutrition persists. 41% of children under age five are stunted, 29% of children are underweight, and 18% of women of reproductive age are malnourished1. The Government of Nepal, research institutions, and local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are working to improve nutrition through nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions such as agricultural programs that increase production, productivity and income; improving water, sanitation, and hygiene practices; and encouraging more equitable food allocation within the household2. The involvement of Continue reading →
0 comments

Research Brief #18: Food prices, their determinants and connections to child nutrition in Nepal

A majority of Nepalese households are net buyers of food and depend on markets for their food purchases (CBS 2011). As a result, market performance and food prices directly influence levels of household consumption. These, in turn, can influence nutrition outcomes. Given the potentially deleterious effects of high food prices on child nutrition outcomes in food-purchasing households, one of the important pathways to reducing child malnutrition rates over time is likely to be by increasing market efficiency and reducing food prices. A number of studies Continue reading →
0 comments

A Qualitative Look at the Barriers to Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Agriculture and Nutrition Research in Nepal

Nepal’s burden of malnutrition and the dominance of agricultural livelihoods highlight the importance of understanding the pathways from agricultural production to nutritional outcomes and employing interventions that incorporate food production and consumption. A need for improved understanding of such pathways and the impacts of nutrition-sensitive interventions has encouraged related research initiatives in Nepal. Agriculture research has often been conducted separately from nutrition research, despite the inherent relationship between agriculture and nutrition in rural Nepal’s food-producing households and increasing recognition that agricultural production directly influences food Continue reading →
0 comments
Henjum et al 2014

Iron deficiency is uncommon among lactating women in urban Nepal, despite a high risk of inadequate dietary iron intake

The main objective of the present study was to examine the association between dietary Fe intake and dietary predictors of Fe status and Hb concentration among lactating women in Bhaktapur, Nepal. We included 500 randomly selected lactating women in a cross-sectional survey. Dietary information was obtained through three interactive 24 h recall interviews including personal recipes. Concentrations of Hb and plasma ferritin and soluble transferrin receptors were measured. The daily median Fe intake from food was 17·5 mg, and 70% of the women were found Continue reading →
0 comments

LCIRAH Presentation: PoSHAN policy process

This presentation was given by Dr. Webb at the LCIRAH conference in June of 2014 and discusses nutrition policy using PoSHAN data.
0 comments
Cover Image: Research in Asia: Approach, Methods and Protocols

Research Briefing #14: Research in Asia: Approach, methods, And Protocols

At the 19th International Congress on Nutrition in Bangkok (in 2009), the United Nations’ Standing Committee on Nutrition concluded that “there is an urgent need to provide evidence- based information on food-based strategies and systems in order to make a case for their promotion. A series of scientific articles on food security interventions for nutrition should therefore be published to complement the public health interventions promoted by the Lancet Series [of 2008]. Sustainable food security approaches to nutrition require systemic, multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral approaches taking Continue reading →
0 comments

Overview of, and Opportunities for Collaboration with, the Nutrition Innovation Lab

Given as a webinar for USAID, this presentation details the work and mission of the Nutrition Innovation Lab, why our work is important, and possibilities for collaboration with other Innovation Labs.
0 comments

The Role of Horticulture and Aquaculture in Addressing Nutrition Needs

This presentation examines possible solutions for malnutrition sourced from the horticulture and aquaculture sectors, Patrick Webb, March 2014
0 comments
Cover Image:Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Sympoium August 13-14 2013

Research Briefing #13: Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd annual scientific symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway. Featuring 15 oral and 11 poster presentations, the two day meeting was attended by approximately 250 participants who represented researchers, field practitioners, government policymakers, donors (including the USAID mission) and 40 students from various Nepali institutions of higher education. The symposium included two keynote Continue reading →
0 comments

No Rice in the House: Risk Factors and Association with Nutritional Status of Nepalese 9-13 year olds

The aim of the study is to examine the association between household characteristics and “rise insecurity” as a measure of food insecurity and to explore the relationship between rice insecurity and the nutritional status of children 9-13 years of age in a rural population in Sarlahi District of Nepal. Read the Document
0 comments
Cover Image: The prize and the price of good nutrition

The prize and the price of good nutrition

The global burden of disease is shifting rapidly. While in 1990, the top-ranked contributor to the global burden was child underweight, twenty years later we find that cancers and circulatory diseases contribute the most– accounting for 19% of global disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), with about a third of the total deriving from other non- communicable diseases (NCDs), including chronic respiratory, digestive, neurological, mental, endocrine, and other disorders1. By 2010, child underweight had dropped to 8th place in the ranking of contributors to the overall disease Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Baseline Report

Baseline findings of this nationally representative study reveal variations in nutritional status, household food security, agricultural production and practices, and sanitation between the agro ecological zones of Nepal. Undernutrition in under-five children and women was found to be consistently worse in the terai (with the exception of under-five stunting rates being approximately 36%). Household food insecurity was 40% across the PoSHAN sample during the May – July 2013 season; with terai households found to be least food insecure. The utilization of innovative agricultural practices were Continue reading →
0 comments

2nd Annual Scientific Symposium Proceedings, August 13-14, 2013

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway.
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Finding Pathways to Accelerate Nutritional Impacts

John Hopkins’ PoSHAN review at the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium, August 2013.
0 comments
Cover Image: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

Research Brief #12: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

While best programming methods have been identified for many of the essential nutrition actions–e.g., breastfeeding, micronutrient tablet provision–the way forward for improving complementary feeding practices is much less clear, as is agriculture’s contribution. The vast majority of children in Nepal do not receive a minimum acceptable diet, and behavior change for complementary feeding within households has been difficult to achieve at scale. An underestimated constraint on child feeding is that the child’s food preparation takes a lot of mothers’ time, which is often already limited Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Research Brief #11: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Recently, there have been renewed calls for the integration of nutrition, health, and agriculture to improve the nutritional status of populations. Whereas these sectors previously operated in separate realms, various frameworks have been propounded to highlight the importance of a multi‐sectoral approach and to establish links between the sectors to impact nutritional status. The 2008 Lancet Nutrition Series and the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) framework have provided evidence‐based interventions that have largely guided efforts at an integrated approach to address maternal and child undernutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

Research Brief #10: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

We combine three distinct datasets to study the connections between agriculture and child health in Nepal. Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from 2006 are merged on the basis of common GIS data points with satellite remote sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) composites. Using these data we explore the association between the NDVI, a monthly proxy for agricultural production, and nutrition outcomes in children under age 5. We also employ nationally representative data from the 2003‐2004 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) to assess connections Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition Degrees In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

Research Brief #9: Nutrition Degree Programs In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

The Government of Nepal (GoN) has made a major commitment to improving the nutritional status of its population. For example, Nepal was one of the earliest countries to join the Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement. As a SUN country, Nepal has articulated a clear strategy for scaling up direct nutrition interventions as well as identifying multi-sector strategies for improving nutrition. To this end, GoN in September 2012 released its Multi-Sector Nutrition Plan (MSNP) that will guide the government’s investment for the period 2013 to 2017. Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Research Brief #8: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Globally, approximately 2.4 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation facilities, while 1.1 billion of those people practice open defecation (WHO 2012a; JMP 2012). Open defecation contributes substantially to the insanitary environment in which too many children grow up. About 2 million people die every year due to diarrheal diseases; most of them are children less than 5 years of age. Indeed, diarrhea is the second leading cause of death globally among children under 5, killing more young children than HIV/AIDS, malaria and Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

Research Brief #3: Nutrition CRSP Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (CRSP)- Asia through its partner, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, organized a two-day scientific symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, co-hosted by the Department of Community Medicine and Public Health at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The Nutrition CRSP is a multidisciplinary research consortium, which seeks to determine investments needed in agriculture, health and nutrition, institutional and human capacity development, and program development to achieve large-scale improvements in nutrition outcomes. The preliminary report of the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

Research Brief #2: Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

In the context of commitments shown by the Government of Nepal to addressing the country’s nutrition challenges, the National Planning Commission, in collaboration with the Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (N/CRSP), organized a two‐day stakeholders’ forum to discuss research priorities in nutrition, health, and agriculture. The forum (held on November 21/22 2011) brought together 115 participants from across Nepal’s Government (National Planning Commission, Ministry of Health and Population, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Local Development), as well as key Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-Pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Objective: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments
Cover Image: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Research Brief #1: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Collaborative Research Support Programs (CRSPs) represent a long‐standing form of US government funding for research that facilitates partnerships among US‐based and developing‐country scholars on agriculture, food and nutrition issues of policy relevance globally. The CRSPs receive core funding from the Bureau for Food Security of USAID, as well as buy‐ins from USAID Missions and other parts of the Agency. The Nutrition CRSP is the most recently‐established of 10 existing CRSPs. As the first in a series of summaries of key issues, aimed at communicating progress Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review Stock Taking Report Nepal’s Private Sector Initiatives, Strategies and Interests in Nutrition

There is growing interest of private sector in food industries. This has come because of growing urbanization and better transportation opportunities as food now can be sent from one location to another at a fast rate than in the past. Moreover, the knowledge of food processing and quality is growing, and private sector has cashed this desire through establishing food processing industries. Agricultural industries have been the focus of the government since the start of planning for development started from the mid 1950s. The interest Continue reading →
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 1

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2011 starting October 2010 through September 2011 (“Y1”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review of Food Security and Human Nutrition Issues in Nepal

Nepal faces multiple development challenges, including chronic and wide spread food insecurity and adult and child malnutrition. Due to population growth, agricultural stagnation and a range of institutional failures, the threat of a serious food crisis in Nepal is substantial. The recent scaling back of WFP assistance means that food security conditions in some parts of Nepal will undoubtedly worsen in the near future. This paper presents a brief review of topics and available evidence regarding food security, malnutrition and related subjects in Nepal. It is intended to document important source Continue reading →
0 comments

Stock taking Report Nutrition Sensitive Interventions for Agricultural Sector

Vulnerabilities to food insecurity are growing in Nepal. These vulnerabilities come from various factors – namely general decline in food production or agricultural growth, food price rise, seasonality in agricultural production, higher poverty rate in the food deficit areas, changes in food habits consuming junk food, especially in urban areas, lack of income and employment opportunities, lack of effective transportation for food distribution, especially in the hills and mountains, and chronic utilization problems such as inadequate access to health services, water and sanitation. Climate change Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin B-12 status in infancy is positively associated with development and cognitive functioning 5 y later in Nepalese children

We measured the associations between vitamin B-12 status in infancy (2–12 mo) and the development and cognitive functioning in Nepalese children 5 y later. Vitamin B-12 status was assessed in infancy with the use of plasma cobalamin, total homocysteine (tHcy), and methylmalonic acid (MMA). At 5 y of age, we measured development with the use of the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, 3rd edition (ASQ- 3), and cognitive functioning by using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, 2nd edition (NEPSY II), in 320 children. In regression models, we estimated Continue reading →
0 comments

Erythrocyte fatty acid composition of Nepal breast-fed infants

Essential fatty acids play a critical role in the growth and development of infants, but little is known about the fatty acid status of populations in low-income countries. The objective was to describe the fatty acid composition of red blood cells (RBC) in breastfeed Nepali infants and a subsample of their mothers and to identify the main sources of fatty acids in the mother’s diet, as well as the fatty acid composition of breast milk.
0 comments

Individual, household, and community level risk factors of stunting in children younger than 5 years: Findings from a national surveillance system in Nepal

Stunting (height‐for‐age z‐score [HAZ] < −2) affects close to a quarter of the world’s child population younger than 5 years, with South Asia bearing over half of the childhood‐stunting burden. Stunting both reflects chronic undernutrition and sustained resource‐constrained environments and is often associated with an increased risk of impaired cognition, reduced economic productivity, poor health outcomes throughout the life cycle, and poor survival overall. In recent years, efforts to prevent stunting have been among the leading priorities of governments, donors, and civil society organizations, reflected Continue reading →
0 comments

Markets, transportation infrastructure and food prices in Nepal

We study transportation infrastructure and food markets in Nepal over the period 2002 to 2010, combining monthly price data from 37 local and regional markets and 7 Indian border markets. We use a series of autoregressive models to study price determination, spatial and temporal price transmission, and price variance. We account for district-level agricultural production, correcting for bi-directional causality between output and prices using ground station rainfall data. In addition, to test hypotheses regarding the importance of transportation infrastructure we incorporate information on road and Continue reading →
0 comments

Climatic conditions and child height: Sex-specific vulnerability and the protective effects of sanitation and food markets in Nepal

Abstract Environmental conditions in early life are known to have impacts on later health outcomes, but causal mechanisms and potential remedies have been difficult to discern. This paper uses the Nepal Demographic and Health Surveys of 2006 and 2011, combined with earlier NASA satellite observations of variation in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) at each child’s location and time of birth to identify the trimesters of gestation and periods of infancy when climate variation is linked to attained height later in life. We find Continue reading →
0 comments

Optimizing the Multisectoral Nutrition Policy Cycle: A Systems Perspective

Based on the data collected in Uganda, Nepal, and Ethiopia, the papers included in this supplement fill a critical gap in evidence regarding multisectoral National Nutrition Action Plans. The studies offer new data and new thinking on how and why governance, effective financial decentralization, and improved accountability all matter for nutrition actions in low-income countries. This introductory paper offers an overview of the current state of evidence and thinking on the multisectoral nutrition policy cycle, including how governance and financing support that process. It also Continue reading →
0 comments

Implementing Multisector Nutrition Programs in Ethiopia and Nepal: Challenges and Opportunities From a Stakeholder Perspective

Effective governance is essential for effective nutrition program implementation. There are additional challenges in launching multisector plans to enhance nutritional status. The present study compares the challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia and Nepal in designing and implementing a multisector plan for nutrition. A semi-quantitative questionnaire with open-ended questions was used to solicit information from senior national-level policy officials and other key stakeholders. The nature of the major nutrition problems in each country was similar; these include malnutrition (particularly stunting), food insecurity, and micronutrient malnutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments

Prioritizing and Funding Nepal’s Multisector Nutrition Plan

Nepal has a long tradition of designing good multisectoral nutrition policy. However, success of policy implementation has varied. More evidence on how to successfully carry out multisector nutrition policy is needed. This study used a mixed-method longitudinal design to track qualitative and budgetary changes related to MSNP processes nationally as well as in 3 districts. Qualitative changes in each study area were assessed through interviews, observation, news content, and meeting notes. Changes in allocations and expenditures were calculated based on budget documents, work plans, and validation Continue reading →
0 comments

Measuring Nutrition Governance: An Analysis of Commitment, Capability, and Collaboration in Nepal

Global commitments to nutrition have supported calls for better evidence to support effective investments at national level. However, too little attention has so far been paid to the role of governance in achieving impacts. This article explores the ways by which the commitment and capabilities of policy implementers affect collaborative efforts for achieving nutrition goals.
0 comments

Overcoming the Limits of Evidence on Effective Multisectoral Nutrition Policy

The multisectoral approach has evolved as a popular instrument to attain nutrition goals and targets. But as policy makers, we need timely, relevant, and accurate information in order to effectively support these plans. This commentary comes from the members of the nutrition secretariats at the National Planning Commission in Nepal and the Office of the Prime Minister in Uganda on availability and use of evidence and the nutrition policy cycle. As has been highlighted in this supplement, some of the challenges we have faced include Continue reading →
0 comments

Low Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Nepalese Infants Despite High Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency among Their Mothers

Describing vitamin D status and its predictors in various populations is important in order to target public health measures. Objectives: To describe the status and predictors of vitamin D status in healthy Nepalese mothers and infants. Methods: 500 randomly selected Nepalese mother and infant pairs were included in a cross-sectional study. Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were measured by LC-MS/MS and multiple linear regression analyses were used to identify predictors of vitamin D status. Results: Among the infants, the prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency (25(OH)D <50 nmol/L) Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 3 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the third panel survey.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Report- Year 6

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition for the fiscal year 2016 starting October 2015 through September 2016 (“Y6”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the links between aflatoxins Continue reading →
0 comments

Infrastructure mitigates the sensitivity of child growth to local agriculture and rainfall in Nepal and Uganda

Incorporating agriculture into nutrition policy requires an understanding of how agricultural performance, rainfall, and the economic and physical environments in which children reside relate to linear growth and weight gain. This paper combines anthropometric data from children below the age of 5 y in Nepal and Uganda with rainfall data and other information to measure these connections. Anthropometric outcomes are positively correlated with rainfall prior to birth, during the first year, and during agricultural growing seasons preceding child measurement. High rainfall is found to be Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Panel 2 Report

The goal of PoSHAN Community Studies is to understand the factors that link agriculture to nutrition. This involves researching the determinants of household food security, dietary intake, and nutritional status of children under 5 years of age and their mothers in relation to changes in agriculture and exposure to agricultural and microeconomic extension, as well as nutrition and health programs in Nepal. This descriptive report summarizes the main findings of the second panel survey conducted between May – July 2014.
0 comments

Duration of programme exposure is associated with improved outcomes in nutrition and health: the case for longer project cycles from intervention experience in rural Nepal

Economic growth and poverty reduction are not always sufficient to improve child health and nutritional status. Heifer International promotes livestock introduction and related training for community development and poverty alleviation. These programmes do not directly address child health or nutrition. To determine effects of its activities on these important outcomes, Heifer conducted a 4-year longitudinal investigation in rural Nepal. The intervention was associated with significantly improved child anthropometry (related to the duration of intervention exposure) and child health. Heifer activities represent a viable ‘nutrition sensitive’ Continue reading →
0 comments

What Does It Cost to Improve Household Diets in Nepal? Using the Cost of the Diet Method to Model Lowest Cost Dietary Changes

In Nepal, limited availability and affordability of nutritious foods contribute to malnutrition. To identify nutrient deficiencies in commonly consumed diets and model lowest cost changes that could improve diet quality in 3 agroecological zones of Nepal. The modeled lowest cost diet commonly eaten in 3 Nepalese communities lacks key nutrients. Policies and interventions that increase market availability and consumption of vitamin B12- and calcium-rich fish and dark green leafy vegetables could improve local diets, particularly in the mountains and hills.
0 comments

Aflacohort Study Field Operations and Accomplishments

This presentation was delivered to USAID by Ashish Pokharel in August, 2016 as an update and overview of the Nepal Aflatoxin birth study (Aflacohort), daily procedures, plus some of the early findings.
0 comments

Climatic Conditions and Child Height: Sex-Specific Vulnerability and the Protective Effects of Sanitation and Food Markets in Nepal

This presentation was given at the AAEA Annual Meeting on August 2, 2016 by Prajula Mulmi.
0 comments

Learning Lab Indicators of Food Insecurity and Malnutrition

This presentation was delivered by Drs. Shibani Ghosh and William Masters June 20-21, 2016 at the ANH Academy Week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
0 comments

Child dietary quality in rural Nepal: Effectiveness of a community-level development intervention

Nutrition-sensitive agricultural interventions have the potential to improve child dietary quality in rural households, as evidenced by a growing body of work which concurrently measures agricultural and nutrition indicators. Our objective was to investigate whether children in rural farming communities of Nepal participating in a community-level, nutrition-sensitive development intervention had improved dietary quality compared with children living in non-participating matched rural communities. Six rural communities of Nepal where livelihoods were predominantly agricultural were selected to participate in the phased implementation of a community-level development intervention Continue reading →
0 comments

Vitamin Status among Breastfed Infants in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Vitamin deficiencies are known to be common among infants residing in low- and middle-income countries but relatively few studies have assessed several biochemical parameters simultaneously. The objective of the study was to describe the status of vitamins (A, D, E, B6, B12 and folate) in breastfed infants. We measured the plasma concentrations of trans retinol, 25 hydroxy vitamin D, α-tocopherol, pyridoxal 5′-phosphate, cobalamin, folate, methylmalonic acid, homocysteine, hemoglobin and C-reactive protein from 467 randomly selected infants. One in five (22%) was deficient in at least Continue reading →
0 comments

Head Growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health, and diet

Background: Brain development in early childhood is a key determinant of later cognition, social achievement and educational success. Head circumference (HC) measurements are a simple method to assess brain growth, yet reports of these measurements are uncommon in nutritional surveys of undernourished children. To cite this article: Laurie C. Miller, Neena Joshi, Mahendra Lohani, Rupa Singh, Nisha Bhatta, Beatrice Rogers, Jeffrey K. Griffiths, Shibani Ghosh, Shubh Mahato, Padma Singh & Patrick Webb (2016): Head growth of undernourished children in rural Nepal: Association with demographics, health Continue reading →
0 comments

The prevalence of anemia and iron deficiency is more common in breastfed infants than their mothers in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Iron deficiency anemia is a widespread public health problem, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Maternal iron status around and during pregnancy may influence infant iron status. We examined multiple biomarkers to determine the prevalence of iron deficiency and anemia among breastfed infants and explored its relationship with maternal and infant characteristics in Bhaktapur, Nepal.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 5

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2015 starting October 2014 through September 2015 (“Y5”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Agriculture, Food Security, Diet and Nutrition in Nepal: Insights from the USAID Nutrition Innovation Lab

This presentation was delivered by Sudeep Shrestha in November 2015 at the International Conference on Maternal and Child Nutrition in Sri Lanka.
0 comments

Nutrition-Specific and Nutrition-Sensitive Interventions: Implications for Programming in Nepal

This presentation was delivered by Patrick Webb on Oct. 9, 2015 at the Seminar Institute of Medicine.
0 comments

Agricultural Diversity and Child Stunting in Nepal

This article investigates empirical connections between agriculture and child nutrition in Nepal. We augment the standard approach to explaining child nutrition outcomes by including information about household level agricultural production characteristics, including indicators of agricultural diversity. Data from the 2010/2011 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) are used in a series of regression models to explain stunting outcomes and variation in height-for-age Z-scores among 1,769 children 0–59 months of age. Results highlight the relative importance of overall agricultural yields, specific crop groups, and the consumption of own-production as factors correlated Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Abstract- Objectives: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments

Underlying Vitamin A Status Affects the Association between Dark Green Leafy Vegetable Intake and Serum Retinol and β-Carotene Concetrations among Pregnant Women in Nepal

This poster presentation examines levels of Vitamin A and B Carotene in pregnant women in Kathmandu Nepal.
0 comments

Environmental Variability and Child Growth in Nepal

Data from the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Survey are combined with satellite remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data to evaluate whether interannual variability in weather is associated with child health. For stunting, we focus on children older than 24 months of age. NDVI anomaly averages during cropping months are evaluated during the year before birth, the year of birth, and the second year after birth. For wasting, we assess children under 59 months of age and relate growth to NDVI averages for the Continue reading →
0 comments

Valuing Women’s Time in Nutrition

Dr. Webb presents in London with the APPG. With renewed concerns for malnutrition in the context of post-2015 development framework, it is important to consider the directions taken by nutrition research and policy. Recent work in the areas of agriculture, nutrition and health is seeking to shed light on how agriculture can improve nutrition and health. Women are seen as important players in many of the pathways linking agriculture and nutrition. Women’s participation in agricultural work can contribute to nutrition via increased incomes, but it Continue reading →
0 comments

Strengthening Policy Actions and Governance for Nutrition

This is the joint Nutrition Lab/SPRING presentation to USAID on common research activities in Nepal and Uganda regarding policy and governance for nutrition.  It was presented May 5th, 2015 in Washington DC.
0 comments

Urbanization, market development and malnutrition in farm households: evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys, 1986–2011

A principal effect of agricultural productivity growth is to accelerate urbanization by supplying food, labor and other resources to urban services and industry. Towns and cities may also grow for their own reasons, pulling food and resources out of rural areas. Whether pushed or pulled, the development of markets creates new opportunities for agricultural households. This study tests whether, on balance, proximity to older towns and cities has improved or worsened malnutrition among farm households in 43,850 survey clusters in 46 developing countries between 1986 Continue reading →
0 comments

Agricultural policy for improved nutrition in Africa and Asia: evidence to guide the US Government’s investments in food security

The roundtable process was designed to complement numerous past and ongoing efforts to assemble and disseminate rigorous evidence on how agricultural change can best help to improve international nutrition, beginning with the first Lancet Maternal and Child Nutrition series in 2008 and its follow-up in 2013 and other systematic reviews (Webb and Kennedy 2014), as well as assessments from private groups such as the Copenhagen Consensus (2014) and the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (2014), international organizations such as the World Continue reading →
0 comments

Mycotoxin Exposure among Pregnant Women: Examining Knowledge, Practices, Diet Quality and Effects on Birth Outcomes in Banke, Nepal

The goal of aim 1 is to qualitatively assess existing agricultural and food storage knowledge and practices and quantitatively assess if knowledge and practices are associated with maternal aflatoxins exposure levels.
0 comments

Low dietary diversity and micronutrient adequacy among lactating women in a peri-urban area of Nepal

The main objectives were to assess the adequacy of the micronutrient intakes of lactating women in a peri-urban area in Nepal and to describe the relationships between micronutrient intake adequacy, dietary diversity and sociodemographic variables. Breast-feeding is one of the most important factors that can influence child health in low- and middle-income countries. During lactation, women have increased requirements for energy and micronutrients. An inadequate maternal intake of certain nutrients during this period may have consequences for both the mother’s health and nutritional status, as well as those of the breast-fed Continue reading →
0 comments

The 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition: Connecting the Evidence To Action

Briefing from the 3rd Annual Scientific Symposium The Nutrition Innovation Lab’s partner, Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with the Institute of Medicine and the Nepal Agriculture Research Council, hosted its 3rd annual Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal on November 18-20, 2014. The question driving this symposium was simple: how can agriculture improve household food security and nutrition outcomes? Yet the work of understanding the agriculture to nutrition pathway is complex. Building sustainable systems that promote food security, nutrition, and health in Nepal requires the utilization of high-quality, empirical evidence. The Continue reading →
0 comments

2014 Scientific Symposium Presentations

AGRICULTURE, FOOD SYSTEMS AND, NUTRITION: CONNECTING THE EVIDENCE FOR ACTION CO-Hosted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Community Medicine and Public Health– Institute of Medicine & the Nepal Agricultural Research Council.   Day 1 Oral Presentations Alan Dangour Time to move from Agriculture to Action in Agriculture and Health Akriti Singh Maternal Access to Information: Can Bhanchhin Aama Influence Child Diets? Chandra Thapa Bridging the Gap: Food Security Response Analysis and Planning Based on the Nepal Food Security Monitoring System (NEKSAP) Continue reading →
0 comments

Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies

The 2014 Annual Scientific Symposium in Katmandu Nepal, Jamie Dorsey’s poster presentation entitled, “Linking Antenatal and Postnatal Care, maternal health knowledge, and behavior among women in the PoSHAN Community Studies”.
0 comments

Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Erin Bihel entitled, “Does amount and kind of food brought by a Household vary by indices of wealth in Nepal”
0 comments

Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies

2014 Nutrition Innovation Lab’s Scientific Symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, Poster presentation from Claire Fitch entitled, “Is diversity in agriculture production linked to dietary diversity in among Nepalese Women? Findings from the PoSHAN Community Studies”
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Laboratory:Nepal Research and Capacity-Building Activities

This presentation was given by Maura Mack as an update to USAID in Nepal on the nature of the Nutrition Innovation Lab’s work and progress in Nepal, November, 2014.
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 4

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2014 starting October 2013 through September 2014 (“Y4”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring the Continue reading →
0 comments

Determinants of Stunting and Severe Stunting among under-fives: Evidence from the 2011 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey

Stunting remains a major public health concern in Nepal as it increases the risk of illness, irreversible body damage and mortality in children. Public health planners can reshape and redesign new interventions to reduce stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than 5 years in this country by examining their determinants. Hence, this study identifies factors associated with stunting and severe stunting among children aged less than five years in Nepal.
0 comments

Challenges to Turning Nutrition & Agriculture Research into Action: A Case Study of NGO Research Uptake in Nepal

In Nepal, despite improvements in poverty reduction and health services, malnutrition persists. 41% of children under age five are stunted, 29% of children are underweight, and 18% of women of reproductive age are malnourished1. The Government of Nepal, research institutions, and local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are working to improve nutrition through nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive interventions such as agricultural programs that increase production, productivity and income; improving water, sanitation, and hygiene practices; and encouraging more equitable food allocation within the household2. The involvement of Continue reading →
0 comments

Research Brief #18: Food prices, their determinants and connections to child nutrition in Nepal

A majority of Nepalese households are net buyers of food and depend on markets for their food purchases (CBS 2011). As a result, market performance and food prices directly influence levels of household consumption. These, in turn, can influence nutrition outcomes. Given the potentially deleterious effects of high food prices on child nutrition outcomes in food-purchasing households, one of the important pathways to reducing child malnutrition rates over time is likely to be by increasing market efficiency and reducing food prices. A number of studies Continue reading →
0 comments

A Qualitative Look at the Barriers to Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Agriculture and Nutrition Research in Nepal

Nepal’s burden of malnutrition and the dominance of agricultural livelihoods highlight the importance of understanding the pathways from agricultural production to nutritional outcomes and employing interventions that incorporate food production and consumption. A need for improved understanding of such pathways and the impacts of nutrition-sensitive interventions has encouraged related research initiatives in Nepal. Agriculture research has often been conducted separately from nutrition research, despite the inherent relationship between agriculture and nutrition in rural Nepal’s food-producing households and increasing recognition that agricultural production directly influences food Continue reading →
0 comments
Henjum et al 2014

Iron deficiency is uncommon among lactating women in urban Nepal, despite a high risk of inadequate dietary iron intake

The main objective of the present study was to examine the association between dietary Fe intake and dietary predictors of Fe status and Hb concentration among lactating women in Bhaktapur, Nepal. We included 500 randomly selected lactating women in a cross-sectional survey. Dietary information was obtained through three interactive 24 h recall interviews including personal recipes. Concentrations of Hb and plasma ferritin and soluble transferrin receptors were measured. The daily median Fe intake from food was 17·5 mg, and 70% of the women were found Continue reading →
0 comments

LCIRAH Presentation: PoSHAN policy process

This presentation was given by Dr. Webb at the LCIRAH conference in June of 2014 and discusses nutrition policy using PoSHAN data.
0 comments
Cover Image: Research in Asia: Approach, Methods and Protocols

Research Briefing #14: Research in Asia: Approach, methods, And Protocols

At the 19th International Congress on Nutrition in Bangkok (in 2009), the United Nations’ Standing Committee on Nutrition concluded that “there is an urgent need to provide evidence- based information on food-based strategies and systems in order to make a case for their promotion. A series of scientific articles on food security interventions for nutrition should therefore be published to complement the public health interventions promoted by the Lancet Series [of 2008]. Sustainable food security approaches to nutrition require systemic, multidisciplinary and inter-sectoral approaches taking Continue reading →
0 comments

Overview of, and Opportunities for Collaboration with, the Nutrition Innovation Lab

Given as a webinar for USAID, this presentation details the work and mission of the Nutrition Innovation Lab, why our work is important, and possibilities for collaboration with other Innovation Labs.
0 comments

The Role of Horticulture and Aquaculture in Addressing Nutrition Needs

This presentation examines possible solutions for malnutrition sourced from the horticulture and aquaculture sectors, Patrick Webb, March 2014
0 comments
Cover Image:Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Sympoium August 13-14 2013

Research Briefing #13: Proceedings of the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd annual scientific symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway. Featuring 15 oral and 11 poster presentations, the two day meeting was attended by approximately 250 participants who represented researchers, field practitioners, government policymakers, donors (including the USAID mission) and 40 students from various Nepali institutions of higher education. The symposium included two keynote Continue reading →
0 comments

No Rice in the House: Risk Factors and Association with Nutritional Status of Nepalese 9-13 year olds

The aim of the study is to examine the association between household characteristics and “rise insecurity” as a measure of food insecurity and to explore the relationship between rice insecurity and the nutritional status of children 9-13 years of age in a rural population in Sarlahi District of Nepal. Read the Document
0 comments
Cover Image: The prize and the price of good nutrition

The prize and the price of good nutrition

The global burden of disease is shifting rapidly. While in 1990, the top-ranked contributor to the global burden was child underweight, twenty years later we find that cancers and circulatory diseases contribute the most– accounting for 19% of global disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), with about a third of the total deriving from other non- communicable diseases (NCDs), including chronic respiratory, digestive, neurological, mental, endocrine, and other disorders1. By 2010, child underweight had dropped to 8th place in the ranking of contributors to the overall disease Continue reading →
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Baseline Report

Baseline findings of this nationally representative study reveal variations in nutritional status, household food security, agricultural production and practices, and sanitation between the agro ecological zones of Nepal. Undernutrition in under-five children and women was found to be consistently worse in the terai (with the exception of under-five stunting rates being approximately 36%). Household food insecurity was 40% across the PoSHAN sample during the May – July 2013 season; with terai households found to be least food insecure. The utilization of innovative agricultural practices were Continue reading →
0 comments

2nd Annual Scientific Symposium Proceedings, August 13-14, 2013

The Nutrition Innovation Lab‘s 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium held in Kathmandu, Nepal on August 13-14, 2013 under the theme “Science and Policy for Health, Agriculture and Economic Growth” facilitated the sharing of new research findings along the agriculture to nutrition pathway.
0 comments

PoSHAN Community Studies: Finding Pathways to Accelerate Nutritional Impacts

John Hopkins’ PoSHAN review at the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium, August 2013.
0 comments
Cover Image: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

Research Brief #12: Market Analysis of Complementary Foods in Nepal

While best programming methods have been identified for many of the essential nutrition actions–e.g., breastfeeding, micronutrient tablet provision–the way forward for improving complementary feeding practices is much less clear, as is agriculture’s contribution. The vast majority of children in Nepal do not receive a minimum acceptable diet, and behavior change for complementary feeding within households has been difficult to achieve at scale. An underestimated constraint on child feeding is that the child’s food preparation takes a lot of mothers’ time, which is often already limited Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Research Brief #11: Stocktaking: Agriculture Degree Programs in Nepal

Recently, there have been renewed calls for the integration of nutrition, health, and agriculture to improve the nutritional status of populations. Whereas these sectors previously operated in separate realms, various frameworks have been propounded to highlight the importance of a multi‐sectoral approach and to establish links between the sectors to impact nutritional status. The 2008 Lancet Nutrition Series and the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) framework have provided evidence‐based interventions that have largely guided efforts at an integrated approach to address maternal and child undernutrition. The Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

Research Brief #10: Measuring the Links Between Agriculture and Child Health in Nepal

We combine three distinct datasets to study the connections between agriculture and child health in Nepal. Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from 2006 are merged on the basis of common GIS data points with satellite remote sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) composites. Using these data we explore the association between the NDVI, a monthly proxy for agricultural production, and nutrition outcomes in children under age 5. We also employ nationally representative data from the 2003‐2004 Nepal Living Standards Survey (NLSS) to assess connections Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition Degrees In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

Research Brief #9: Nutrition Degree Programs In Nepal: A Review of Current Offerings and Gaps

The Government of Nepal (GoN) has made a major commitment to improving the nutritional status of its population. For example, Nepal was one of the earliest countries to join the Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement. As a SUN country, Nepal has articulated a clear strategy for scaling up direct nutrition interventions as well as identifying multi-sector strategies for improving nutrition. To this end, GoN in September 2012 released its Multi-Sector Nutrition Plan (MSNP) that will guide the government’s investment for the period 2013 to 2017. Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Research Brief #8: Sanitation in Nepal: Links to Nutrition and Research Priorities

Globally, approximately 2.4 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation facilities, while 1.1 billion of those people practice open defecation (WHO 2012a; JMP 2012). Open defecation contributes substantially to the insanitary environment in which too many children grow up. About 2 million people die every year due to diarrheal diseases; most of them are children less than 5 years of age. Indeed, diarrhea is the second leading cause of death globally among children under 5, killing more young children than HIV/AIDS, malaria and Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

Research Brief #3: Nutrition CRSP Scientific Symposium: Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition in Nepal: Taking Stock and Defining Priorities

The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (CRSP)- Asia through its partner, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, organized a two-day scientific symposium in Kathmandu, Nepal, co-hosted by the Department of Community Medicine and Public Health at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The Nutrition CRSP is a multidisciplinary research consortium, which seeks to determine investments needed in agriculture, health and nutrition, institutional and human capacity development, and program development to achieve large-scale improvements in nutrition outcomes. The preliminary report of the 2011 Nepal Demographic Health Continue reading →
0 comments
Cover Image:Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

Research Brief #2: Nutrition CRSP Stakeholder Meeting: Selected Conclusions on Research Priorities for Nepal

In the context of commitments shown by the Government of Nepal to addressing the country’s nutrition challenges, the National Planning Commission, in collaboration with the Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (N/CRSP), organized a two‐day stakeholders’ forum to discuss research priorities in nutrition, health, and agriculture. The forum (held on November 21/22 2011) brought together 115 participants from across Nepal’s Government (National Planning Commission, Ministry of Health and Population, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Local Development), as well as key Continue reading →
0 comments

Risk Factors for Anemia in Non-Pregnant Women across the Agroecological Zones of Nepal

Objective: Describe the prevalence of anemia in Nepali non-pregnant women of reproductive age by agroecological zone and potential risk factors.
0 comments
Cover Image: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Research Brief #1: The Nutrition Collaborative Research Support Program (Nutrition CRSP): Planned Activities in Nepal

Collaborative Research Support Programs (CRSPs) represent a long‐standing form of US government funding for research that facilitates partnerships among US‐based and developing‐country scholars on agriculture, food and nutrition issues of policy relevance globally. The CRSPs receive core funding from the Bureau for Food Security of USAID, as well as buy‐ins from USAID Missions and other parts of the Agency. The Nutrition CRSP is the most recently‐established of 10 existing CRSPs. As the first in a series of summaries of key issues, aimed at communicating progress Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review Stock Taking Report Nepal’s Private Sector Initiatives, Strategies and Interests in Nutrition

There is growing interest of private sector in food industries. This has come because of growing urbanization and better transportation opportunities as food now can be sent from one location to another at a fast rate than in the past. Moreover, the knowledge of food processing and quality is growing, and private sector has cashed this desire through establishing food processing industries. Agricultural industries have been the focus of the government since the start of planning for development started from the mid 1950s. The interest Continue reading →
0 comments

Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 1

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2011 starting October 2010 through September 2011 (“Y1”). The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to discover how investments in agriculture can be enhanced to accelerate gains in nutrition, and how policy and program interventions can more effectively integrated to cost-effectively achieve improvements in maternal and child nutrition at scale. It also pursues innovative research at the frontiers of biology and policy, such as exploring Continue reading →
0 comments

A Review of Food Security and Human Nutrition Issues in Nepal

Nepal faces multiple development challenges, including chronic and wide spread food insecurity and adult and child malnutrition. Due to population growth, agricultural stagnation and a range of institutional failures, the threat of a serious food crisis in Nepal is substantial. The recent scaling back of WFP assistance means that food security conditions in some parts of Nepal will undoubtedly worsen in the near future. This paper presents a brief review of topics and available evidence regarding food security, malnutrition and related subjects in Nepal. It is intended to document important source Continue reading →
0 comments

Stock taking Report Nutrition Sensitive Interventions for Agricultural Sector

Vulnerabilities to food insecurity are growing in Nepal. These vulnerabilities come from various factors – namely general decline in food production or agricultural growth, food price rise, seasonality in agricultural production, higher poverty rate in the food deficit areas, changes in food habits consuming junk food, especially in urban areas, lack of income and employment opportunities, lack of effective transportation for food distribution, especially in the hills and mountains, and chronic utilization problems such as inadequate access to health services, water and sanitation. Climate change Continue reading →
0 comments

Robin Shrestha

Nutrition Innovation Lab
Country Representative
617-460-7564 (USA)| fax: 977-1-5260459
Green Block, Ward No. 10, Chakupat, Lalitpur | P.O. Box: 3752

Kedar Prasad Baral

Project Investigator, Nutrition Innovation Lab
Professor of Public Health
Department of Community Health Sciences
Patan Academy of Health Sciences
P.O. Box No. 26500
Kathmandu, Nepal
Lagankhel, Lalitpur
Nepal

Dale Davis

Investigator, Nutrition Innovation Lab
Helen Keller International Nepal Country Director
tel: 977-1-5260459, 5260247, 5260837 | fax: 977-1-5260459 | ddavis@hki.org | Skype: dale.davis21
Helen Keller International Nepal| Green Block, Ward No. 10, Chakupat, Lalitpur | P.O. Box: 3752
www.hki.org | https://www.facebook.com/HelenKellerInternational

Speak Your Mind

Your email address will not be published.

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>