Obesity as a form of malnutrition: Over-nutrition on the Uganda “malnutrition” agenda

Christine Ngaruiya*, Alison Hayward, Lori Post, Hani Mowafi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The objectives were to highlight the burden of overweight and obesity as an additional area of importance for the malnutrition agenda in Uganda and to provide evidence-based considerations for stakeholders involved. Introduction: Mirroring other Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs), Uganda is experiencing a "double burden" of over-nutrition related issues - both obesity and overweight, and related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) alongside the under-nutrition that has long plagued the country. Despite the commonplace assumption that under-nutrition is the predominant form of malnutrition in Uganda, we explore recent literature that in fact, challenges this notion. While food insecurity has contributed to the under-nutrition problem, a lack of dietary diversity also has a demonstrated role in increasing over-nutrition. We cannot afford to ignore over-nutrition concomitant with stunting and wasting in the country. Increase in the burden of this less acknowledged form of malnutrition in Uganda is critical to investigate, and yet poorly understood. A move towards increased regionally targeted over-nutrition research, funding, government prioritization and advocacy is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number49
JournalPan African Medical Journal
StatePublished - Sep 20 2017


  • Africa
  • East Africa
  • Malnutrition
  • Nutrition
  • Obesity
  • Overweight
  • Uganda

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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