The State of the World's Children 1998: Focus on Nutrition

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Figure 6. Inadequate dietary intake/disease cycle

Inadequate dietary intake and infection in a vicious cycle that accounts for much of the high morbidity and mortality seen in developiong countries. When children don't eat enough, their immune system defences are lowered, resulting in greater incidence, severity and duration of disease. Disease speeds nutrient loss and suppresses appetite -- so sick children tend not to eat as they should -- and the cycle continues.

Source: Andrew Tomkins and Fiona Watson, Malnutrition and Infection, ACC/SCN, Geneva 1989

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