During under nutrition a person’s diet is deficient in the required calories. children are mostly affected due to availability of less than normally required diet and they suffer from a disease called marasmus. In this disease, children are reduced to a skeleton as the body becomes completely depleted. Some of the countries like Ethiopia are famine stricken. Although international community does try its best to rescue the famine inflicted areas yet it is not possible for them to meet their complete nutritional requirements on such a large scale. The world population is continuously and rapidly increasing each year. It has been estimated that by 2025, the world population will rise to ten billion, whereas water and soil resources are being continuously depleted by increasing use by the continuously growing population. The experts therefore envisage that increasing human population if not checked will soon eat up all the food resources of the world which may lead to destruction of human race.
If malnutrition (a diet missing in one or more essential nutrients) continues for a prolonged period, particularly under special circumstances, such as during pregnancy or immediately after childbirth, it is found to be very harmful.
If malnutrition occurs during lactation period, it causes irrepairable damage to the infant. During the last quarter of pregnancy when foetus is rapidly developing its cerebral tissues, the protein deficient diet of the mother results in mental retardness and nervous abnormalities in foetus, which may prove fatal or lead to permanent disorders. These abnormalities may also occur in infants if the lactating mother is taking a protein deficient diet during the first year of breast-feeding.
If a human diet lacks essential elements or nutrients, the body will fail to prepare vital compounds, and thus the person will suffer from various diseases. Deficiency of a few amino acids, vitamins, fatty acids (about thirty compounds) and 21 mineral elements, called as essential nutrients in diet are responsible for various diseases.
In the poor countries like ours packaged or junk food(sugar coated cumin seeds, betal nuts, chewing gums and drinks) are not prepared under proper care. The food colours scents and flavours are added to make them commercially attractive. But these are substandard and harmful for human health. The use of food additives may be the cause of dangerous diseases like cancer and ulcer etc. These items should, therefore, be avoided.
It is the problem of the developed countries where people eat too much. Obesity is the most common disorder due to over nutrition. Obesity is the cause of a large number of diseases too.