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Malnutrition - -1BIOL103 Assignment 6c Malnourishment...

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-1 BIOL103 Assignment 6c Malnourishment Research Project Genise Caruso December 18, 2007 I often question if “we,” as a global society have advanced morally, or become any more civilized than the days when cavemen roamed the earth. Everyday I read or see something on TV that not only shocks me, but is truly disgusting. Our priorities are so out of balance, I’m surprised the earth doesn’t spin off it’s axis. TV shows depict the “lifestyles of the rich and narcissistic.” There’s so much self-indulgence and arrogance portrayed, it’s a real moral debauchery. No one needs a 40,000 square foot home! A popular magazine I read, featured in its December issue, “The Wish List,” Gilded treasures, artsy accessories, and exotic leathers for every person on your list (and some for yourself). Highlighted were crocodile-and-fox-fur gloves, for $3,300, a cashmere travel pillow for $595, a makeup case packed with 36 products for $18,000, a crocodile purse for $30,600, and the ultimate in decadence, a jewelry watch for the mere price of $497,500! So why do I find this so offensive? It’s because while some people are indulging in hedonistic extravagances most of us can’t even fathom, in other parts of the world, people are dying due to malnutrition, from not having adequate nutritious foods. What makes it seem impossible to even comprehend is, we have the technology to fly to outer space, can shop for any item, find information on any subject, and communicate with people half way around the world, 24 hours a day, at the click of a button, yet we can’t figure out a way to feed the entire population! Learning that our agricultural resources have the means to produce ample food to feed everyone on our planet, and that malnutrition and starvation aren’t necessary, made this even more disturbing. Poverty is the primary cause, with factors including, man-made and natural disasters, discrimination, (especially against women) racism, corruption, and the HIV/AIDS epidemic, as contributing issues. Malnutrition, a.k.a. undernutrition is a medical condition resulting from the insufficient consumption of adequate nutrients needed for the body to function properly. It’s caused by an inadequate intake of calories, vitamins, minerals, etc., poor food absorption and distribution, but can also be caused by overeating or excessive intake of specific nutrients. Malnutrition is a serious condition that affects people primarily in developing countries, and has severely disabled and/or killed millions, mostly children and women. According to the World Health Organization, (WHO) it’s believed malnutrition played a main role in the deaths of over five million children under the age of five, in developing countries. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the U.S. reported 850 million people were undernourished between the years of 1999 and 2005. As of 2006, malnutrition continues to be a shameful problem affecting the entire world.
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Two forms of malnutrition are most prevalent; known as marasmus and kwashiorkor.
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