Nutrition & Agriculture Linkages

In what ways do investments in agriculture achieve significant measurable impacts in nutrition? As a corollary, can pathways to impact be empirically demonstrated?

Recognition that “merely producing more food does not ensure food security or improved nutrition” (Herforth et al. 2012) begs questions about when, where and why does it, or does it not ensure food security or improved nutrition? These questions lie at the core of a better understanding of the reality of agriculture-to-nutrition linkages.

Overview & ActivitiesRelated Publications

The belief that “agriculture contributes not just to food production but also to human nutrition and health” (IFPRI 2012) underpins ongoing efforts to “make agricultural policies and programs nutrition-sensitive” (BMGF 2012; Ruel et al. 2013). Yet, despite the considerable rhetoric that agriculture holds the potential to support improved nutrition, there is scant empirical evidence of the kinds of actions in agriculture that achieve significant and measurable human outcomes. Thus, the search for empirical evidence of ‘what works’ in this arena has been stepped up.

Enhancing agriculture in ways that support improved nutrition is not simply about increasing yields. It is also about reducing costs, enhancing stability in output, strengthening resistance to weeds, pests and diseases, promoting more variety or new crops, stimulation of market and value chain activity, targeting efforts to at-risk regions and populations, securing greater female empowerment (in the agricultural realm and beyond), and promoting demand for a high quality, diverse diet. As a result, agriculture as a broad sector of activity must be unpackaged so that relevant components can be assessed for their relative contributions to nutritional enhancement. This means that pathways linking agriculture and nutrition need to be refined through a focus on plausible biological and other mechanisms over different timeframes, and potential gains need to be understood in net terms through a focus on factors that affect nutrition at the interface among soil, plant and human systems.

Recognition that “merely producing more food does not ensure food security or improved nutrition” (Herforth et al. 2012) begs questions about when, where and why does it, or does it not ensure food security or improved nutrition? These questions lie at the core of a better understanding of the reality of agriculture-to-nutrition linkages.

The Nutrition Innovation Lab seeks to delve deeper into the links between nutrition and agriculture through carefully designed primary data collection activities. “Poshan,” which means good nutrition in Nepali, involves two interlinked research studies being undertaken in Nepal. The research from the PoSHAN Project will link metrics of institutional and individual collaboration at national and district government (multiple line ministry) levels with metrics of program fidelity at local (sub-district) levels.

Read more about about the PoSHAN Project.

The output of this aspect of the research will be papers that empirically measure defined pathways from agriculture to nutrition. This research, conducted where marginal agricultural productivity, market diversity, food security and nutritional status co-exist with government and NGO programs, offers an opportunity to examine and establish conditional pathways that may help raise the nutritional impact of future agricultural and multisectoral policies and programs.

Charting the cost of nutritionally-adequate diets in Uganda, 2000-2011

Although malnutrition rates have been on the decline in Uganda over the past two decades, they remain high. Challenges to achieving nutritional improvements result, in part, from high staple foods prices, which raise the cost of the food basket and increase the risk of food and nutrition insecurity, especially for poor households who are net buyers of staple foods. Nearly two-thirds of Ugandan households are net buyers of staples, a pattern that highlights the potential importance of food prices as a key driver of food Continue reading →
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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 →
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Nutrition Smoothing: Can Proximity to Towns and Cities Protect Rural Children against Seasonal Variation in Agroclimatic Conditions at Birth?

A large literature links early-life environmental shocks to later outcomes. This paper uses seasonal variation across the Democratic Republic of the Congo to test for nutrition smoothing, defined here as attaining similar height, weight and mortality outcomes despite different agroclimatic conditions at birth. We find that gaps between siblings and neighbors born at different times of year are larger in more remote rural areas, farther from the equator where there are greater seasonal differences in rainfall and temperature. For those born at adverse times in Continue reading →
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Food insecurity, but not HIV-infection status, is associated with adverse changes in body composition during lactation in Ugandan women of mixed HIV status

A cohort of 246 women [36.5% of whom were HIV positive (HIV+) and were receiving ART] were followed to 12 mo postpartum. Repeated measures included weight, fat mass, fat-free mass, mid upper arm circumference, triceps skin fold thickness [which allowed for the derivation of arm muscle area (AMA) and arm fat area (AFA)], breastfeeding, and individual food insecurity. Longitudinal regression models were constructed to assess associations between HIV and food insecurity and changes in body composition over time.
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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.
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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 →
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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 →
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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 →
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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 →
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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.
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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 →
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The Nutrition Transition and Agricultural Transformation: a Preston curve approach

The nutrition transition in diets and health is closely tied to other aspects of economic development, including agricultural transformation and urbanization as well as demographic change and epidemiological transition from infectious to noncommunicable disease. Over time, dietary patterns typically shift from widespread inadequacy of many foods and nutrients, especially for children and mothers, into surplus energy intake and rising obesity with continued inadequacy of healthier foods. Diet-related diseases remain the largest single cause of premature death and disability in all regions. This article combines food Continue reading →
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Nutrient composition of premixed and packaged complementary foods for sale in low‐ and middle‐income countries: Lack of standards threatens infant growth

Premixed flours for infant porridge are increasingly produced and sold in developing countries to complement continued breastfeeding. Such complementary food (CF) products have known efficacy against malnutrition in children from 6 to 24 months of age, but ingredient ratios and production processes may vary. This study provides the first systematic measurement of their actual nutrient composition. We purchased samples of 108 premixed CF products in 22 low‐ and middle‐income countries, and commissioned blind laboratory measurement of each product’s macronutrients and micronutrients. We compared measured contents Continue reading →
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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 →
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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.
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Chapter 2.2 The Economic Causes of Malnutrition

From the book Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century
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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 →
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Relationship of Stunting and Overweight in Egyptian children under five years of age: Trends and associated risk factors.

Egypt’s emerging economy faces a dual burden wherein there is coexistence of under and over nutrition, either in the same population, community, household or same individual. The dual burden of disease can be extremely variable in its manifestation. It can, for example, be manifested as stunted children who are concurrently obese, or as stunted children who may not be currently obese but who are at risk of early onset chronic diseases. Secondary Analysis provided by the Nutrition Innovation Lab.  
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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.
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The association between food insecurity and depressive symptoms severity among pregnant women differs by social support category: a cross-sectional study

Abstract Common mental disorders, such as depression and anxiety, affect approximately 16% of pregnant women in low- and middle-income countries. Food insecurity (FI) has been shown to be associated with depressive symptoms. It has also been suggested that the association between FI and depressive symptoms is moderated by social support (SS); however, there is limited evidence of these associations among pregnant women living in low-income and middle-income countries. We studied the association between FI and depressive symptoms severity and assessed whether such an association varied Continue reading →
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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.
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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.
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Fostering reflective trust between mothers and community health nurses to improve the effectiveness of health and nutrition efforts: An ethnographic study in Ghana, West Africa

As the global health agenda shifts from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the need for effective preventive health efforts has gained prominence, particularly in low-income regions with poor health and nutrition outcomes. To address needs in communities with limited access to health services and personnel, it is important to develop strategies that can improve the effectiveness of nurses as they interact with the populations they serve. We contribute to informing such strategies by explaining how mothers’ “reflective trust” in community Continue reading →
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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.
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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 →
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Protein Quality in the First Thousand Days of Life

The aim of this article is to provide an overview of the role of protein quality within the first 1000 days of life. The article outlines the importance of protein quality in pregnancy and early growth and examines the potential of high-quality protein in prevention of stunting and treatment of severe and moderate acute malnutrition. The article also provides a summary of the recent changes in protein quality evaluation and the development of a new index, the Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score, examining the opportunities Continue reading →
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Cross-sectional but not Longitudinal Measures of Food Insecurity are Associated with the Rate of Weight Gain during Pregnancy in Northern Uganda

Food insecurity (FI) during pregnancy may lead to adverse health outcomes for affected women. However, little is known on whether such effects are due to short-term within person changes (longitudinal effects) in FI or long-term between person differences (cross-sectional effects) in this exposure. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess whether differences in cross-sectional measures of FI between women (defined as the mean prenatal IFIAS score) and/or longitudinal changes in FI within women
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Progression of antepartum depression differs by level of perceived social support and food insecurity

Antepartum depression (AD) is a risk factor for adverse pregnancy outcomes and may be worsened by food insecurity (FI) and lack of social support (SS). We studied the progression of AD from mid gestation to term and examined whether such progression differed by measures of SS and longitudinal measures of FI
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HIV-Infected Pregnant and Lactating Women have Higher Serum Aflatoxin levels than HIV–Uninfected Women and Aflatoxin Levels are Higher during Early Postpartum than during Pregnancy among HIV-Infected Women

Aflatoxins are carcinogenic and may affect linear growth. Prior cross-sectional data from Ghana have shown that aflatoxin levels are ~ 20% higher among HIV-infected than HIV-uninfected post-partum women. It is not known if HIV-infected pregnant women have elevated serum aflatoxin levels during pregnancy, or if aflatoxin levels change during the perinatal period. We therefore studied these relationships among a cohort of 246 women recruited in Gulu, Uganda, and followed through pregnancy and early infant life. All HIV-positive women received HIV antiretroviral therapy for free from Continue reading →
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HIV infection is associated with a lower rate of gestational weight gain and reduced neonatal length

Adequate gestational weight gain (GWG) and neonatal growth are important, respectively, for favorable birth outcomes and survival of infants through the first year. In sub-Saharan Africa, underlying infections, such as HIV, may adversely impact GWG and neonatal growth.
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High levels of food insecurity were observed among HIV, TB, and HIV/TB co-infected outpatients in northern Uganda

Food insecurity among individuals living with HIV is well-recognized globally. Since comorbidity with TB is common, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, we examined the variation in the severity of food insecurity among people with either infection or both concurrently.
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District Presentations: Effectiveness of Integrated Agriculture, Health Livelihood and Nutrition Interventions to Improve Maternal and Child Nutrition and Health in Rural Uganda: A Birth Cohort Study.

These presentations were made in various Ugandan Districts, covering data gathered during the Uganda Birth Cohort Study specific to each of those districts. The presentations were delivered in April of 2016 by Drs. Bernard Bashaasha and Florence Kinyata. Click on the district name to see its specific presentation. Agweng Aduku Agoro Apac Atanga Atyakc Ayer Buganagri Buyanja Bwizi Kebisoni Nyamweru Parombo Kibiito Rugyeyo Ruhija
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Effect of Nutrition-Sensitive Agricultural Extension Program on Nutrition Knowledge and Dietary Practices of Farming Households in Mukono District, Central Uganda

This poster presentation discusses the outcomes of an extension program implemented in the Mukono District of Central Uganda. It was investigating the knowledge levels of nutrition among men and women, as well as factors that influenced diet diversity among farming households.
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Perinatal Exposure to Aflatoxins is Associated with a Lower Rate of Weight Gain Among HIV-Infected Pregnant Women and Reduced Linear Growth of HIV-Exposed Infants

Aflatoxins (AF) are carcinogens associated with poor linear growth in infants. AF serum levels have been reported to be higher in HIV infected (+) women. However, it is not known if maternal AF exposure affects gestational weight gain (GWG), or if relationship between in utero AF exposure and changes in perinatal anthropometry differs by maternal HIV or infant HIV exposure status. We enrolled 403 pregnant women (33.3% HIV (+), all on anti-retroviral treatment) at the antenatal clinic of Gulu Hospital, northern Uganda.
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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 →
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Aquaculture and Horticulture Programs: Impacts of Single vs. Multiple Interventions in Bangladesh

This presentation was given by Dr. Patrick Webb to the Technical Advisory Group as an update on the Nutrition Innovation Lab’s ongoing interventions in Bangladesh, and the preliminary findings. Dhaka, March 21st, 2016  
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Sustaining healthy diets: The role of capture fisheries and aquaculture for improving nutrition in the post-2015 era

Fish production and trade contribute significantly to global agricultural output. Fish production in 2012 exceeded 158 million metrictons, while the value of international fish trade amounted to USD129 billion. An increasingly large share of fish entering global markets derives from aquaculture (the farming of aquatic animals and plants); the world’s fastest growing food production sector for more than four decades.  Much of fish produced and traded within low-income countries derives from capture fisheries (non-fed fish harvested from undomesticated ecosystems). These two production systems have important complementary roles in meeting rising demand for Continue reading →
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Got Baby Food? Understanding the Market for Packaged Complementary Foods in Developing Countries

This presentation was delivered by Dr. William Masters on Feb. 3, 2016 as a Friedman School Seminar, Tufts University.
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Global dietary quality, undernutrition and non-communicable disease: a longitudinal modelling study

The objective is to determine the relationship between global dietary energy availability and dietary quality, and nutrition-related health outcomes.
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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.
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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 →
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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.
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UNICEF: Timor-Leste Food and Nutrtion Survey 2013- Final Report

UNICEF Report: The data collection for this survey was carried out between May and September 2013 among children aged 0-59 months and their non-pregnant mothers (aged 14 – 60 years). The survey assessed the risk factors for undernutrition based on Conceptual Framework of Malnutrition (UNICEF, 1990) which is being used for nutrition programming worldwide for the past 25 years. The prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies (vitamin A, iron, zinc, and iodine deficiency), and the iodine content of household iodised salt and aflatoxin exposure among children (aged 6 – 59 Continue reading →
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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.
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The Global Pattern of Malnutrition: From undernutrition to obesity and diet-related disease

This presentation was delivered Oct. 14, 2015 for the BIFAD event at the World Food Prize Borlaug Dialogue by Dr. William Masters.
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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 →
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Understanding Agriculture to Nutrition Linkages: A Rapidly Moving Agenda

Presentations from Sept 30th, 2015 in Washington DC on research findings from the first 5 years of our research in Asia and Africa. These are the compiled slides from 8 separate presentations from: Patrick Webb, Patrick, Gerald Shively, Keith West, Shibani Ghosh, Nassul Kabunga, Robin Shrestha, Bernard Bashaasha, and Jeffrey Griffiths. To view the presentations, click on the presentation below to see the recording. Understanding Agriculture to Nutrition Linkages: A Rapidly Moving Agenda Maura Mack  Opening Statements Patrick Webb  Mapping Nutrition Innovation Lab Research: How does it all Continue reading →
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Does Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program improve child nutrition?

In this paper, we use data from Northern Ethiopia to study the links between a social protection program and child nutrition. Child malnutrition is one of the many challenges that pose a threat to economic growth in developing countries. It undermines educational attainment, lowers non-cognitive skills, leads to low labor productivity during adulthood, and  diverts attention and resources away from other development objectives. Ultimately, under-nutrition during childhood can lead to intergenerational poverty.
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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.
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Building Strategic Capacities to Strengthen the Enabling Environment for Nutrition Policies and Programs in Four African Countries

Undernutrition has received significant attention at global and national levels in recent years but translating this attention into effective action at the country and district levels poses many challenges. We describe the observed national environments that support and challenge actors in moving national multisectoral nutrition policies and plans forward and how this on-going action research (AR) project seeks to strengthen strategic capacities and leadership in Burkina Faso, Mali, Ethiopia and Uganda.
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Alcohol Use Among Pregnant Ugandan Women of Mixed HIV Status is Associated with Social Environment and Food Insecurity

Antenatal alcohol use (AAU) is associated with poor health outcomes in maternal-infant dyads. However, AAU prevalence and risk factors are poorly understood, particularly in low-income settings. Therefore we studied correlates of any AAU among pregnant women receiving antenatal care in Gulu, Uganda.
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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.
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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 →
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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 →
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Understanding Pathways of Better Nutrition: Poster Presentation

This poster is a result of Edgar Agaba’s ALE-(Applied Learning Experience) research work that was completed last year in Uganda’s 2 districts of Lira and Kisoro.  Collaborators included MPH- ALE, JSI/SPRING Project, and the Nutrition Innovation Lab.  The poster was presented at the LCIRAH Research Conference, June 03-04, 2015.  
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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 →
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Combining public datasets to explore global trends in dietary quality, undernutrition and chronic disease 1980-2009

Combining public datasets to explore global trends in dietary quality, undernutrition and chronic disease 1980-2009 Agricultural production, commodity marketing and food consumption patterns have changed significantly over the past 30 years the world over, as have national epidemiological profiles.
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Understanding Pathways of Better Nutrition

This presentation is a result of Edgar Agaba’s ALE-(Applied Learning Experience) research work that was completed last year in Uganda’s 2 districts of Lira and Kisoro.  Collaborators included MPH- ALE, JSI/SPRING Project, and the Nutrition Innovation Lab. It was originally presented it to  Faculty and students on Wednesday, April 29th 2015: Sackler Room 316, 4:00 – 7:30 p.m as part of the ALE Presentations.
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UNICEF: Timor-Leste Food and Nutrtion Survey 2013- Summary of Key Findings and Recommendations

UNICEF Report: The data collection for this survey was carried out between May and September 2013 among children aged 0-59 months and their non-pregnant mothers (aged 14 – 60 years). The survey assessed the risk factors for undernutrition based on Conceptual Framework of Malnutrition (UNICEF, 1990) which is being used for nutrition programming worldwide for the past 25 years. The prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies (vitamin A, iron, zinc, and iodine deficiency), and the iodine content of household iodised salt and aflatoxin exposure among children (aged 6 – 59 Continue reading →
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Social Support Modifies Bidirectional Linkages Between Food Insecurity and Prenatal Depressive Symptoms while Domestic Violence Alters the Unidirectional Impact of Food Insecurity on Prenatal Depressive Symptoms

To inform perinatal nutrition and mental health interventions, we used a cohort study to: 1) examine the directionality of relationships between maternal food insecurity (MFI) and prenatal depressive symptoms (PDS); and 2) see if social support (SS) or domestic violence (DV) modify this relationship. We enrolled 403 Ugandan pregnant women (33% HIV+ on antiretrovirals)) in mid-gestation and assessed them monthly through delivery for MFI (IFIAS) and the PDS (CES-D) using validated scales.
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Microbial Decontamination of Fresh Produce (Strawberry) Using Washing Solutions

This Tuskegee University study was carried out to determine the effect of natural antimicrobial washing solutions against microbial growths on fresh produce specifically strawberries. Selected washing solutions used for strawberry washing, and treatments were sterile water (control), white vinegar (VI), crude lemon juice extract (LE), VI+Origanum oil (VIO), LE+Origanum oil (LEO), and VI+LE+Origanum oil (VILEO).
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Household Malaria and Livestock: Linking Health, Nutrition & Agriculture

Presentation on the benefits of Improved Dairy Cows.
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Dietary quality, undernutrition and disease: global patterns and trends over three decades

Recent studies have found evidence of an increasing polarization between healthy and unhealthy diets, with many high income countries having diets that are becoming more healthy, while in lower income countries diets are becoming more unhealthy. However, little is known about how the changing availability of different kinds of foods at a national level may be related to both undernutrition and NCDs.
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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.
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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 →
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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 →
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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 →
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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”
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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.
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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 →
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Cover-Brown et al 2014

Using satellite remote sensing and household survey data to assess human health and nutrition response to environmental change

Climate change and degradation of ecosystem services functioning may threaten the ability of current agricultural systems to keep up with demand for adequate and inexpensive food and for clean water, waste disposal and other broader ecosystem services. Human health is likely to be affected by changes occurring across multiple geographic and time scales. Impacts range from increasing transmissibility and the range of vectorborne diseases, such as malaria and yellow fever, to undermining nutrition through deleterious impacts on food production and concomitant increases in food prices. Continue reading →
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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 →
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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 →
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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 →
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Determinants of Nutritional Outcomes Among Children below Five Years of Age in Uganda

 This thesis presents findings of a study that sought to understand determinants of nutritional outcomes of children below five years of age in Uganda. Understanding these determinants was vital because in the Ugandan situation, most of the determinants are not ade8uately understood.  Even for those that are known, the magnitude of their impact and or the relative strengths of their impact on nutritional outcomes across regions is not well known.
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Factors Associated with Complementary Feeding Practices Among Children age 6-23 months in Pader District

Infant and young child feeding has been known to compromise the health of children among which complementary  feeding plays a major part. Even communities that have performed adequately in breast feeding have had  their  efforts undermined by complementary feeding hence causing malnutrition among their children.  This study was conducted with the aim of finding out factors that are associated with complementary feeding among the children in Pader district.
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Factors Associated with Dietary Diversity Among Women of Reproductive Age (15-49 yrs) in Agago District

Despite the internationally accepted recommendation that eating a diversity of foods leads to a healthy diet, and is associated with positive health outcomes such as reduced mortality, little information exists on what factors influence dietary diversity among women of reproductive age in Agago district.  The objective of this study is to determine dietary diversity among women of reproductive age (15-49 years) in Agago district.
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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.
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Cover Image-Agricultural correlates of linear growth and key modifiers among children under two years in rural Uganda

Agricultural correlates of linear growth and key modifiers among children under two years in rural Uganda

Many sources have recently called for agricultural programs and policies to become more “nutrition-sensitive”, with the aim of harnessing agriculture to improve nutrition and health. Several researchers have described potential causal pathways through which agriculture could impact the nutrition and health of vulnerable populations. Stunting, or poor linear growth, particularly in young children is a key indicator. Reflecting chronic undernutrition, stunting can begin in utero, and studies have shown that it can be difficult to recover from faltering in linear growth during gestation and the Continue reading →
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Achieving Concurrent Agricultural Productivity and Nutrition Goals through Research

Global Legume Researchers Meeting: this presentation examines the role of legumes in promoting better, more sustained solutions for improving global nutrition. Presented by Dr. Webb, May 2014, in Athens Greece.
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Cover Image: Impact of tissue culture banana technology on farm household income and food security in Kenya

Impact of tissue culture banana technology on farm household income and food security in Kenya

While tissue culture (TC) technology for vegetative plant propagation is gradually gaining in importance in Africa, rigorous assessment of broader welfare effects for adopting smallholder farm households is lacking. Using survey data and accounting for selection bias in technology adoption, we analyze the impact of TC banana technology on household income and food security in Kenya. To assess food security outcomes, we employ the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) – a tool that has not been used for impact assessment before. Estimates of treatment-effects Continue reading →
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Can Smallholder Fruit and Vegetable Production Systems Improve Household Food Security and Nutritional Status of Women?

This paper aims to empirically infer potential causal linkages between fruit and vegetable (F&V) production, individual F&V intake, household food security, and anemia levels for individual women caregivers of childbearing age. Using a unique and rich data set recently collected from rural smallholder Ugandan households, we show that the use of a qualitative tool to measure household food insecurity is robust and applicable in other contexts. We also show, using robust econometric methods, that women living in F&V-producer households have a significantly higher intake of Continue reading →
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Cover Image: Impacts of agriculture on nutrition: Nature of the evidence and research gaps

Impacts of agriculture on nutrition: Nature of the evidence and research gaps

Demand for empirical evidence of “what works” for nutrition through agriculture has arguably never been higher. In the past few years, there has been a proliferation of interest in how to leverage agriculture to maximize its impacts on nutrition, particularly among mothers and children. The belief that “agriculture contributes not just to food production, but also to human nutrition and health” is widely held, and it underpins ongoing efforts globally to “make agricultural policies and programs nutrition-sensitive”. However, the search for solid empirical findings on Continue reading →
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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 →
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Working together to Improve Nutrition

This presentation examines the effectiveness of programmes and how to get more “bang for the buck” in terms of supplying evidence.
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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.
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The Contribution of Agriculture to Nutrition: Thought Experiments and Experimental Thoughts

This presentation, given in Kathmandu by Patrick Webb, covers global nutrition statistics and examines the pathways between agriculture and nutrition in relation to those statistics.  March 2014.
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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
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Cover Image: Agriculture, nutrition, and health in global development: typology and metrics for integrated interventions and research

Agriculture, nutrition, and health in global development: typology and metrics for integrated interventions and research

Despite rhetoric arguing that enhanced agriculture leads to improved nutrition and health, there is scant empirical evidence about potential synergies across sectors or about the mix of actions that best supports all three sectors. The geographic scale and socioeconomic nature of these interventions require integration of previously separate research methods. This paper proposes a typology of interventions and a metric of integration among them to help researchers build on each other’s results, facilitating integration in methods to inform the design of multisector interventions. The typology Continue reading →
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Agricultural correlates of linear growth and key modifiers among children under two years in rural Uganda

Many sources have recently called for agricultural programs and policies to become more “nutrition-sensitive”, with the aim of harnessing agriculture to improve nutrition and health. Several researchers have described potential causal pathways through which agriculture could impact the nutrition and health of vulnerable populations. Stunting, or poor linear growth, particularly in young children is a key indicator. Reflecting chronic undernutrition, stunting can begin in utero, and studies have shown that it can be difficult to recover from faltering in linear growth during gestation and the Continue reading →
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Improved Dairy Cows in Uganda: Pathways to Poverty Alleviation and Improved Child Nutrition

There is limited empirical evidence on the linkages between agrotechnologies, poverty reduction and the pathways to better nutrition outcomes. The introduction and dissemination of improved dairy cow breeds in Uganda is arguably the most significant step taken to develop a modern and commercial dairy industry in the country over the last two decades. This study uses a nationally representative sample of Ugandan households to rigorously examine the impact of adoption of improved dairy cow breeds on enterprise-, household-, and individual child-level nutrition outcomes. We find Continue reading →
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Nutrition Innovation Labs Overview and Opportunities for Collaboration

Given as a webinar for USAID in February 2014, 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.
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Cover Image: Letter to the Editor: Is the strength of association between indicators of dietary quality and the nutritional status of children being underestimated?

Letter to the Editor: Is the strength of association between indicators of dietary quality and the nutritional status of children being underestimated?

The World Health Organization’s infant and young child feeding (IYCF) indicators were developed to fill multiple needs: to facilitate the assessment and comparison of IYCF practices across settings, to identify populations at risk and to evaluate the impact of interventions and measure progress towards achieving targets (World Health Organization 2008). Under- standing the relationships between these indicators and child anthropometric outcomes, as described in a recently published paper in Maternal & Child Nutrition (Jones et al. 2014), is relevant to many of these objectives because Continue reading →
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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
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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 →
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Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 3

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2013 starting October 2012 through September 2013 (“Y3”). 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 →
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Uganda Baseline Report: Assessing the Linkage Between Agriculture, Food Security, Nutrition and Health Among Women and Children in Rural Ugandan Households.

This report provides baseline and nationally representative data regarding nutritional and health issues in Uganda, particularly in terms of maternal and child health. Areas of assessment include livestock, malaria, aflatoxin exposure, water access, sanitation, and dietary information
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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 →
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Cover Image: Afterword: Now is the time

Afterword: Now is The Time

Chapter in The Road to Good Nutrition: A Global Perspective Does the world really need this book? Do the shelves of analysts and policymakers need the weight of yet another compendium of ideas, statistics and rhetoric? The answer, perhaps surprisingly, is yes. Such a book is needed now, more than ever, because it reflects the rapid convergence of opinion around priority problems and likely pathways towards solutions.
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Comprehensive Assessment of the Peanut Value Chain for Nutrition Improvement in Ghana

The goal was to identify opportunities for new investment and interventions to improve nutrition and livelihoods on a commercial scale (through agriculture linking to commercial enterprises). This enhances our understanding of crop value chains particularly relevant to women, and to the issues around value chains involving aflatoxin-free foodstuffs.
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2013 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.  Akoto Osei  Impact of Homestead Food Production on Nutritional Status of Children and Women in Baitadi District, Nepal Ram K Chandyo  Socio economic status, food security and anemia among mothers in Bhaktapur, Nepal Shibani Ghosh  PoSHAN Process Research: Understanding Processes that Support Nutrition Program Impacts John Groopman Prevalence of aflatoxin Continue reading →
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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.
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PoSHAN Community Studies: Finding Pathways to Accelerate Nutritional Impacts

John Hopkins’ PoSHAN review at the 2nd Annual Scientific Symposium, August 2013.
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Impact Pathways from Agricultural Research to Improved Nutrition and Health: Literature Analysis and Research Priorities

This paper contributes to ongoing work at many institutions aimed at identifying priority knowledge gaps, determining the best research approaches needed to fill those gaps, and exploring how to better support policy and programme implementation with sound empirical evidence of ‘what works’.
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Cover Image Baseling Report Uganda 2013

Assessing the Linkage Between Agriculture, Food Security, Nutrition and Health Among Women and Children in Rural Ugandan Households

There is significant movement globally and in Uganda on addressing issues of nutrition and health in vulnerable populations including women and children. This is especially important since approximately 0.5 million women die each year of pregnancy related complications linked under nutrition, while more than 5 million pre-school children die of preventable causes due to the combined effects of disease and under nutrition. There is some progress being made globally, with 63 countries as of 2010 on track to achieve the First Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Continue reading →
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Nutrition Innovation Lab Annual Reports- Year 2

The following are the annual reports of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Nutrition for the fiscal year 2012 starting October 2011 through September 2012 (“Y2”). 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 →
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Research Brief #6: Aflatoxin

This brief explains the sources of aflatoxin, its importance in nutrition-related research, and its effects on humans, animals, and economics
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Integrating Agriculture and Nutrition Actions to Improve Maternal and Child Nutrition: Research on Program Impact Pathways

From a LCIRAH Workshop, June 21-22, 2012, London. There is a need to establish solid, empirical knowledge of the effects of integrated programs targeting agriculture, health and nutrition, which are often complex, multi-sector interventions. In particular, there is a need to develop metrics and measures that will allow researchers within the realm of agriculture-to-health to understand the barriers, facilitators and drivers of nutrition impact- and to be able to rigorously say why and how a program succeeded or failed, as well as draw more generalizable Continue reading →
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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.
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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 →
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Association between household food insecurity and infant growth in rural Bangladesh

Food insecurity is a global concern, yet its association with child growth is not fully understood. This study in rural Bangladesh explored associations between household food insecurity, using standardized questions, and infant growth. We asked a published 10-item, 6-mo household food insecurity questionnaire at 6 and 12 mo postpartum to 6,333 mothers participating in an antenatal micronutrient supplementation trial.
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