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Early childbirth and under-five malnutrition in Mali (Inglês)

Poor nutrition weakens children’s immune systems, putting them at a greater risk of falling sick from preventable illnesses such as pneumonia and diarrhea. According to Horton et al. (2008), nearly one-fifth of under-five deaths in the world could be prevented with optimal feeding. Research also suggests that poor nutrition at a young age may have irremediable consequences for brain development, cognitive skills, and ultimately productivity in adult life. Unfortunately, a large share of children in the developing world are malnourished. The question considered in this brief is whether early childbirth (defined as a child being born of a mother younger than 18), which in many countries is the result of child marriage, contributes to under-five malnutrition in a significant way in Mali. The brief is part of a series of similar standardized country-specific briefs on the same topic for a number of countries.

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