Peanut butter: solution to malnutrition?

Filed under: Activities: Babies, Nutrition: Health, In The News, Media

A simple staple of many a childhood sandwich is poised to become the silver bullet that knocks out malnutrition in Africa: peanut butter.

A peanut butter supplement program in Malawi has been a remarkable success . In a study of 3,000 children, 89 percent of those labeled "severely malnourished" recovered after being given a mixture made up of peanuts, powdered milk, vegetable oil, sugar, vitamins and minerals. The mixture was distributed through Malawi's health-care system and then given to mothers to feed their children at home. In the past, severely malnourished children were given a milk-like porridge which had to be administered in hospital setting to keep it from spoiling. Peanut butter has the dual advantage of a long shelf life in addition to providing a higher caloric content than the porridge.

It always seemed like a country struggling with obesity could come up with some sort of solution for starving countries and it looks like that might have finally happened! You can find more information on Project Peanut Butter on their website.

I can't help but think what a great project this would be for America school kids to support as a classroom project. Instead of buying the world a Coke, maybe everyone could chip in for some Peter Pan!

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.