PICT0132Anemia and Malnutrition

Malnutrition of school-aged children age three and up is often overlooked because the acute malnutrition seen in preschool-aged children is associated with more illness and death. However, older children still suffer from micronutrient deficiency, anemia and diarrhea due to malnutrition. MFK continues to work toward a solution to this devastating problem.

MFK developed a nutritious school snack (Vita Mamba) with funding by USDA/McGovern Dole. A  2012- 2013 study of the acceptability and efficacy of Vita Mamba was performed in Cap-Haitien involving four schools with children below the poverty line. We discovered through data analysis that 70.6% of  these Haitian school children between ages three and 13 were anemic.

 

What is Anemia?

Anemia means that a person’s hemoglobin level is low. In an anemic person there are not enough red blood cells to carry essential oxygen to tissues. A large cause of this problem is poor nutrition. Symptoms of anemia include fatigue, frequent infections, and poor school performance.

Vita MambaVita Mamba

Vita Mamba is a ready-to-use supplementary food (RUSF) for schoolchildren 3 years of age and older. Vita Mamba is a peanut and soy-based paste, fortified with vitamins and minerals,  including zinc, iron, iodine and vitamins A and B12, which may be lacking in the diets of school age children. It also provides a source of energy, protein and essential fatty acids. Vita Mamba was developed specifically to address nutrient gaps and prevent malnutrition.
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When possible, MFK donates Vita Mamba to schools in rural and impoverished areas. We are also working toward the development of a political consciousness that this problem that must be addressed.
Meds & Food for Kids believes that children are every nation’s future and that good educational achievement is the foundation of that future.  We continue to invest in research and the development of new products that address the nutritional needs of children and families in impoverished areas.
Download Vita Mamba information.