Spatial Patterns of Multiple Malnutrition Types in West Africa: Four Country Case Studies: Evidence Note

An important knowledge gap was filled through analysis of the spatial dynamics of various multiple malnutrition burdens among children under five years and women of reproductive age in TNWA focal countries — Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Ghana, and Senegal. Outputs include a slide deck and an evidence note presenting the methodology and summarizing the findings.

Key messages

  • Multiple malnutrition types among children under five years of age (U5s) and women of reproductive age (WRA) are increasingly found within a single community or household, and even within a single individual.
  • Stunting and anemia among U5s is the most common co-occurrence of malnutrition types in Burkina Faso, Ghana, and Nigeria.
  • The most frequent co-occurrence of malnutrition in mother–child pairs is anemic mothers with anemic children, and overweight/obese mothers with anemic children.
  • Contextual factors of multiple malnutrition burdens (MMBs) vary between countries, with some similarities. When both mother and child suffer from anemia it is found to most likely be associated with malaria, whereas when an overweight/obese woman’s child is anemic, it is more likely associated with poor hygiene and feeding practices.
  • The MMB of overweight/obese mothers with anemic children is also more likely to be found in rural areas, wealthier households, and in families with more educated women.