Eradicating malnutrition -- income growth or nutrition programs?

essay from IFPRI's 1999-2000 Annual Report

Lawrence James Haddad, Harold Alderman

Recent research from IFPRI and its partners shows the potential for income growth to improve nutritional status. Encouragingly, income growth indeed contributes to improved nutritional status in 12 countries studied. The authors show how nutrition programs can reduce malnutrition faster, how better nutrition will raise income. They conclude that income affects nutrition, and nutrition in turn affects income. This can be a vicious circle or a virtuous one. Poverty reduction and effective direct nutrition interventions are needed to move us from the vicious to the virtuous.