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Accounting for nutritional changes in six success stories: a regression-decomposition approach
Authors: D. Headey, J. Hoddinott, and S. Park
Source: Global Food Security, 13: 12-20; DOI:
Topic(s): Antenatal care
Wealth Index
Country: Asia
  Multiple Asian Countries
  Multiple African Countries
Published: JUN 2017
Abstract: Over the past two decades, many developing countries have made impressive progress in reducing undernutrition. We explore potential explanations of this success by applying consistent statistical methods to multiple rounds of Demographic Health Surveys for Bangladesh, Nepal, Ethiopia, Odisha, Senegal, and Zambia. We find that changes in household wealth, mother's education and access to antenatal care are the largest drivers of nutritional improvement, except for Zambia where large increases in bednet usage is the single largest factor. Other factors play a smaller role in explaining nutritional improvements with improvements in sanitation only appearing to be important in South Asia. Overall, the results point to the need for multidimensional nutritional strategies involving a broad range of nutrition-sensitive sectors.