Nutrition | About the programme

About the nutrition programme

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Some vegetables with a tape measure around themThe overall aim of the regional nutrition programme is to ensure access for all people to safe and healthy food that meets their recommended nutritional requirements. This is done by supporting the development of sound food and nutrition polices and promoting healthy nutrition knowledge and practices.


The specific objectives of the regional nutrition programme are to:

strengthen national capacities in Member States for formulating and implementing national food and nutrition strategies and plans of action to improve the nutrition status of the population and address emerging nutrition challenges and transitions;

improve the micronutrient status of the populations of Member States through innovative programmes of food supplementation and food fortification with micronutrients of public health significance;

strengthen and improve national capacities of Member States to respond to the nutrition needs of populations living under both normal and complex emergency situations;

provide technical support to countries of the Region to establish technical and programmatic collaboration with partners at global, regional and national levels to promote intersectoral action on food and nutrition;

develop regional and national-level standardized guidelines and protocols for the detection, prevention, management and monitoring of all forms of malnutrition;

support the introduction and implementation of the new WHO growth standards in Member States;

establish and strengthen nutrition databases and surveillance systems on the major forms of malnutrition in Member States.

Statistics and figures

WHO has several nutrition-related global databases. They include data for countries in the Region. Please click on the links to access them.

Vitamin and Mineral Nutrition Information System

WHO Global Database on Body Mass Index

WHO Global Database on Child Growth and Malnutrition

WHO Global Data Bank on Infant and Young Child Feeding

Some nutrition-related data from the Regional Health Observatory:

Estimates of anaemia in non-pregnant women of reproductive age

Anaemia in preschool-age children

Trend estimates for under 5 child malnutrition: