Malnutrition during the first two years of life can lead to increased risk of child morbidity and mortality. Globally, malnutrition causes 45 percent of all deaths reported for children under the age of 5. In addition, malnutrition can cause suboptimal brain development, which negatively affects cognitive development and can lead to poor educational performance and low productivity in adulthood.
As many as four million people in northeast Nigeria currently need emergency food aid due to ongoing conflict and significant depreciation of the Naira, according to FEWS Net’s latest coverage on the region. Large segments of the population in the northeastern part of the country are in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) acute food insecurity, with limited data suggesting some populations could even be facing possible Famine (IPC Phase 5) food insecurity.
IFPRI’s “Stories of Change in Nutrition” series of publications examines evidence from countries with high burdens of malnutrition in order to better understand how nutrition policies are made and how these policies are implemented on the ground.
In recent years, a combination of increased food prices, slowing agricultural growth, and a rapidly rising population have put pressure on Nigeria’s domestic food security. According to IFPRI’s Nigeria Strategy Support Program (NSSP), the average share of income spent on food within the country rose from 45 percent in 2007 to 80 percent in 2008 as a result of the global spike in food prices.