Millennium Development Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
Target: Reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five
Throughout the developing world, one out of every four children – roughly 146 million children – under the age of five is underweight. Among developing regions, child undernutrition is most severe in South Asia and, to a lesser extent, sub-Saharan Africa. For children whose nutritional status is deficient, common childhood ailments such as diarrhoea and respiratory infections can be fatal. Undernourished children who survive the early years of childhood often have low levels of iodine, iron, protein and energy, which can contribute to chronic sickness, stunting or reduced height for age, and impaired social and cognitive development.
Source: UNICEF, The State of The World’s Children 2007, New York, 2006.