Essay Example on Helpless infants are dying every minute in developing countries








Helpless infants are dying every minute in developing countries Infants need attention care and most importantly nutritious food Babies are unable to get their own food take care of themselves or tell you what they want or need Children around the age of two months to one year are considered infants About half of the world s population is affected from undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies Ahmed and others 2012 There are many causes of undernutrition in pregnant women but they almost all relate back to one overlying problem gender inequality It is still crazy to think there is not equality among all people in this day s society In developing countries women are constantly falling behind men in health care having access to food and education Ahmed and others 2012 Women in developing countries do just as much work if not more than the men Females should have the right to food just as men do The same right goes to infants as well Infant girls are predestined to have a rough time getting the nutrients they need from day one Undernutrition is a vicious cycle once undernourished it is unlikely that women will improve their eating habits With that being said infant girls that suffer from undernutrition from birth will most likely continue to suffer from undernutrition throughout the entirety of their lives

Not only is it important for infants to get enough nutrients it is also important to give adolescent girls plenty of nutrient packed food In developing countries marriage usually happens around age sixteen and conception happens shortly after marriage Ahmed and others 2012 Pregnancy is an extremely important time to nourish the fetus The most intricate important development happens in utero Undernourished women may not gain enough weight during pregnancy which in turn leads to a greater chance of mortality than their healthy counterparts Ahmed and others 2012 Undernourished fetuses grow up to be undernourished children and undernourished adults Undernutrition is handed down from generation to generation because there are not changes made to their nutrition over their lifetimes Ahmed and others 2012 It is a cycle that needs to be broken before birth or shortly after to improve the lives of generations to come Low birth weight sets the infant up for a life full of struggles If a child experiences low birth weight within their first two years of life they may become shorter adults have lower attendance rates in school and reduced income as working adults Ahmed and others 2012

There are many other health related risks throughout the infant s life if he or she was born at low birth weight some of these risks include higher risk for hypertension diabetes and coronary heart disease In many cases low birth weight could be prevented by providing better nutrition to the mother during pregnancy Essential fatty acids cannot be made by the human body therefore we must take them in through our diet Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids are two of the most important essential fatty acids to get out of our diet because they bring in alpha linolenic acid and linolenic acid These two acids are essential in the development of the brain and retina especially in unborn and young infants Huffman and others 2011 For infants the main place they get alpha linolenic acid and docosahexaenoic acid is from their mother s breastmilk The best way to feed an infant for at least the first six months of their life is just breastfeeding Ssemukasa and Kearney 2014 Breastfeeding can prevent up to 13 of deaths of children under the age of five Ahmed and others 2012 Breastmilk has many nutrients for growing infants that other foods cannot provide These nutrients promote healthy growth and increased development of their immune systems Ssemukasa and Kearney 2014

After the first six months of exclusive breastfeeding mothers can introduce nutrition packed foods while continuing breastfeeding up to age two Ssemukasa and Kearney 2014 Breastfeeding and complimentary feeding after six months help to promote adequate intakes of essential fatty acids and docosahexaenoic acid in developing countries Huffman and others 2011 It is not morally acceptable that there is plenty of food in this world but people are still starving The fact that all humans do not have the same access to food is heartbreaking We feed more food to animals than we do to the poor in developing countries Many people in developing countries are extremely hard working but still do not make enough money to provide food to their families Why do we not give everyone access to nutritional food We as a society are a highly innovated group of individuals who can get anything done when we work together and want to fix a problem Dying undernourished infants are a problem These children are our future We are killing off our future from the very start of their lives All people have a right to food and we need to work together to make it accessible to all people While there is no one simple fix to undernutrition of mothers and their infants there can be a start to help fewer infants face mortality Breastfeeding promotion increasing access to nutritious food and promoting healthy weight gain for pregnant women can all help this situation Starting in 1967 the United States developed a fortified blended food that contained high protein and micronutrients Perez Exposito and Klein 2009 Food aid from the U S has saved millions of lives already As a society we can continue to help developing countries get the information they need to have happy healthy babies along with happy healthy mothers

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