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Adolescent Nutrition

Donors: Irish Aid

Collaborators: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), Save the Children

ENN project lead and contact: Emily Mates  

Timeframe: until end 2018

Background

Adolescence (defined by the WHO as between age 10 and 19 years) is not only a time of sexual maturation, but also of rapid growth, second only to the first year after birth. Adolescence is a unique point in the life-cycle, as it is a:

Optimal nutrition during this period of life is crucial. Children gain up to 50% of their adult weight and skeletal mass and more than 20% of their adult height during their adolescent years. Poor nutrition will impact both their own nutrition and for girls, the nutritional status of future children leading to intergenerational effects; thin or stunted women are more likely to have small and underweight babies, perpetuating the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition. 

While efforts have been made to improve adolescent health, reflected in an important Lancet commission on adolescent health and wellbeing and a systematic meta-review of interventions for adolescents, both published in 2016, adolescents have not yet had adequate or specific focus, particularly for family planning and nutrition. 

Project Summary 

The purpose of the adolescent nutrition project is to identify synergies, opportunities, priorities and next steps to help develop the evidence base on adolescent nutrition. 

 

ENN, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Save the Children established an informal ‘interest group’ of interested researchers and academics. This group aims to identify emerging research and operational experiences, disseminate existing data with potential for analysis from an adolescent nutrition perspective, help ‘bridge’ the disciplines of health and nutrition by facilitating discussion and learning and to facilitate potential future collaborations for adolescent nutrition, including funding opportunities.

A one day meeting was held in London on December 12th 2017 to identify synergies, opportunities, priorities and next steps to help develop the evidence base in this area. The meeting was well attended with 29 representatives from donors, academics, UN and INGO practitioners. Read a report of the meeting on December 12th, 2017.

Publications

Read a synthesis report of the ‘state of play’ of adolescent nutrition.

Read a report of the Adolescent Interest Group Meeting, held in London on December 12th 2017.

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Reference this page

chloe (2018). Adolescent Nutrition. www.ennonline.net/ourwork/researchandreviews/adolescentnutrition