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Child malnutrition in South Africa: Results from the South African National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (SANHANES-1)

16 July 2018
12:30 - 14:00

South Africa has adopted several policies to address child malnutrition. However, indicators measuring undernutrition, such as the prevalence of stunting, remain relatively high for a middle income country. Undernutrition is linked to the environment in which children live, which encompasses familial, socio-economic and biological factors. South Africans are also undergoing lifestyle changes, marked by changing diets and lower levels of physical activity. In recent years, there is an emergence of childhood and pubertal obesity, leading to long term risks of non-communicable diseases.

This seminar describes malnutrition in South African children aged under 15 years, using data from the South African National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (SANHANES-1) of 2012.  The prevalence of underweight, stunting, wasting, overweight and obesity, as well as multiple cases of malnutrition in the same child, such as the co-occurrence of stunting and overweight, are presented using standardised measures. We also examine the association of malnutrition with various demographic and socio-economic factors at child and family level, such as food security, urbanisation, and diet and weight status of the maternal caregivers

Ms. Ronel Sewpaul, Population Health, Health Systems & Innovation (PHHSI), Human Sciences Research Council

Dr. Jaya Josie, BRICS Research Centre, Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery , Human Sciences Research Council

Date: 16 July 2018    Time: 12:30 – 14:00  Venues: Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town

Presentation available for download below:

Pretoria : HSRC Video Conference, 1st floor HSRC Library Human Sciences Research Council, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Contact : Arlene Grossberg, Tel: (012) 302 2811, e-mail:

Cape Town : HSRC, Merchant House 116-118 Buitengracht Street, Cape Town. Contact : Carmen Erasmus, Tel: (021) 466 7827, e-mail:

Durban :  The Atrium, 5th Floor, 430 Peter Mokaba Ridge, Berea, 4001. Contact Ridhwaan Khan, Tel: (031) 242 5400, cell: 083 788 2786, e-mail:

The HSRC seminar series is funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The views and opinions expressed therein as well as findings and statements of the seminar series do not necessarily represent the views of the DST

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