Maternal and Child Nutrition Improvement in Southeast Asia Region
July 31, 2020
A Success Story from the Southeast Asia Region
ILSI SEA Region’s Technical Committee and Expert Panel on Maternal, Infant and Young Child Nutrition (MIYCN) was established in 2008-2009. The Expert Panel is comprised of more than 10 SEA regional researchers and experts with the objective of facilitating the review and updating scientific understanding and nutrition related issues on maternal, early childhood nutrition and growth development. The Expert Panel aims to identify research gaps and recommend research needs; the development and publication of scientific documents to share status and available data, as well as recommendations on utilization of science-based information for health improvement program implementation.
Over the period, in collaboration with seven regional health and research agencies, a total of six Expert Consultations, 11 Seminars and Workshops had been held in the region with 13 scientific papers published in peer-reviewed journals. About 1,000 nutrition, public health and pediatric professionals from government agencies, health and research institutions, NGOs and the private sector attended the meetings.
These outputs are in line with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (Goal 3 on Good Health and Well Being and Goal 17 on Partnerships) addressing key topics such as the first 1000 days, wasting and stunting, complementary feeding, double burden of undernutrition and overnutrition, anemia and micronutrients deficiencies, gestational diabetes as well as the increased prevalence of adolescent pregnancy in the developing regional countries.
The experts recognize the challenges and limitations with regards to establishing dietary intake data and micronutrients status among the SEA countries, especially pertaining to women of reproductive age. Gaps identified called for better assessment and analysis of maternal dietary intake, identification of priority micronutrients deficiencies and appropriate intervention to increase the nutrient quality of maternal diet.