Undernourished and Overlooked

A global nutrition crisis in adolescent girls and women
| UNICEF | 2023
Undernourished and Overlooked

Undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies and anaemia amplify gender inequalities by lowering learning potential, wages and life opportunities for adolescent girls and women, weakening their immunity to infections, and increasing their risk of life-threatening complications during pregnancy and childbirth.

In ‘Undernourished and Overlooked: A Global Nutrition Crisis in Adolescent Girls and Women’ UNICEF examines the current status, trends and inequities in the nutritional status of adolescent girls and women of reproductive age (15-49 years), and the barriers they face in accessing nutritious diets, utilizing essential nutrition services and benefiting from positive nutrition and care practices.

The analysis focuses on undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies and anaemia because these forms of malnutrition affect the most vulnerable adolescent girls and women in low- and middle-income countries, especially in the context of the ongoing global food and nutrition crisis. (...)

The scale and consequences of undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies and anaemia in adolescent girls and women are being overlooked and under recognized by families, society, governments, development and humanitarian communities, research and academia, media and the private sector. Unless decisive action is taken, we will collectively continue to fail adolescent girls and women, and jeopardize the survival, growth, development and well-being of their children.

Executive Summaries:
Executive summary (English) (PDF, 1 MB)
Executive summary (Arabic) (PDF, 1 MB)
Executive summary (French) (PDF, 1004 KB)
Executive summary (Spanish) (PDF, 1003 KB)