mal·​nu·​tri·​tion | \ ˌmal-nu̇-ˈtri-shən , -nyu̇-\

Definition of malnutrition

: faulty nutrition due to inadequate or unbalanced intake of nutrients or their impaired assimilation or utilization

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Examples of malnutrition in a Sentence

a program to help poor children suffering from malnutrition

Recent Examples on the Web

Instead, the charity used historical mortality rates and U.N. data on Yemeni malnutrition to estimate that more than 25,000, or 20 to 30 percent of all acutely malnourished children, have died every year since April 2015. Rick Noack, The Seattle Times, "85,000 children have starved to death during the Saudi-led intervention in Yemen, charity reports," 21 Nov. 2018 Studies in mice also indicate that paternal malnutrition can lead to elevated serum glucose and thus hypertension—which can lead to cerebral hemorrhage—in male offspring only. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, "Trauma of US Civil War POW experience affected the next generation," 22 Oct. 2018 Photos of the bony bodies of children tell the story of widespread malnutrition. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Revolt in Venezuela," 23 Jan. 2019 Argentina's northern regions have chronically high rates of child malnutrition, even though the country remains a top global grain supplier. Almudena Calatrava, Fox News, "Argentines seek soup kitchens, barter markets amid crisis," 10 Sep. 2018 At least half of all children under five years of age — about 770,000 of them — in that region are suffering from acute malnutrition, including 400,000 young people who are severely malnourished and at risk of death. Nick Turse, Teen Vogue, "The Democratic Republic of Congo Has Humanitarian Crises Leaving Millions of Children In Danger," 14 Nov. 2018 More than three million Venezuelans have fled, leaving those who remain to face crushing rates of murder, malnutrition and hyperinflation. Bradley Olson, WSJ, "Chevron Stayed in Venezuela Long After Rivals Quit. Then It Had Second Thoughts.," 8 Nov. 2018 Policymakers have historically recognized this, crafting rules to protect children from toxic chemicals, malnutrition, and abuse. Julia Belluz, Vox, "The Trump administration’s attack on children’s health protections," 27 Sep. 2018 Diseases such as hepatitis, malaria and tuberculosis are endemic in North Korea, where many people suffer from malnutrition, poor sanitation and a lack of vaccinations and high-quality medical care. Jonathan Cheng, WSJ, "U.S. Blocks Aid Workers From North Korea," 11 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'malnutrition.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of malnutrition

1862, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

16 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for malnutrition

The first known use of malnutrition was in 1862

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More Definitions for malnutrition



English Language Learners Definition of malnutrition

: the unhealthy condition that results from not eating enough food or not eating enough healthy food : poor nutrition


mal·​nu·​tri·​tion | \ ˌmal-nu̇-ˈtri-shən , -nyu̇-\

Kids Definition of malnutrition

: a condition of weakness and poor health that results from not eating enough food or from eating food without the proper nutrients


mal·​nu·​tri·​tion | \ ˌmal-n(y)u̇-ˈtrish-ən \

Medical Definition of malnutrition

: faulty nutrition due to inadequate or unbalanced intake of nutrients or their impaired assimilation or utilization

Other Words from malnutrition

malnutritional \ -​ᵊl \ adjective

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Comments on malnutrition

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excited commotion or publicity

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