The List of 22 Frightening Childhood Hunger Statistics 2022

People are fighting hunger and starvation every single day. And millions of those people are children. Children are the most vulnerable group and the high hunger rate leads to undernourishment, stunting, and death.

How many children fight hunger every day? Does starvation affect their health? How many deaths are there and which countries have the highest hunger child rate?

Find out all the answers in today’s article where the main topic is childhood hunger data.

6 Shocking Childhood Hunger Statistics (Editor’s Pick)

  • 13 million US children live in food-insecure households.
  • Globally, 300,000 children suffer from severe acute malnutrition.
  • Poorly nourished children suffer up to 160 days of illness each year.
  • In developing countries, 40% of children are anemic.
  • West and Central Africa have had an increase in the number of stunted children.
  • Almost 1 in 15 children dies before the age of 5.

22 Childhood Hunger Statistics & Facts

1. Globally, 50.5 million children are estimated to be wasted.

There are more than 50 million children in the world who have too low weight for their height (the definition of wasted). Children do not get enough of the vital and nutritional food. Perhaps, they don’t have money for it or they simply do not have an access to get such food.

Source: Food for Life

2. About 13 million children in the US live in food-insecure homes.

Not only developing countries fight hunger and starvation but the United States too. There are 13 million children in the US who live in food-insecure homes. That means that they do not know if or not there would be food at the table today or the next day. This high number is linked to poverty too.

Source: No Kid Hungry

3. In 2019, more than 1 in 7 US children were food insecure.

Speaking of America, the country had quite a high number of food-insecure children in the previous years. In 2019, there were 10.7 million food-insecure children. As we can see, from 2019 to 2021, there was an increase in the number of children who do not have food on the table every day. That increase was by more than 2 million. We can definitely blame the COVID-19 pandemic for that, as well as a bit unstable world.

The List of 22 Frightening Childhood Hunger Statistics 2022 - Food-Insecure US Children

Source: Children’s Defense Fund.

4. There are 300,000 children who suffer from severe acute malnutrition.

Acute malnutrition is the most dangerous and readily form of extreme hunger. It is caused by a decrease in food consumption or illness that results in sudden weight loss or perhaps oedema, fluid retention. There are 300,000 children globally who suffer from this dangerous disease.

Source: Save the Children

5. An estimated 11 million children are facing extreme hunger.

Fighting extreme hunger is hard for adults, let alone children under the age of 5. Around 11 million children are facing starvation or extreme hunger in 11 countries of Africa, the Caribbean, Asia, and the Middle East.

Source: Save the Children

6. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest number of children fighting hunger and starvation.

Across the countries, Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest percentage of kids who are fighting hunger – 22% of them. In the Caribbean, there are 17.7% of hungry children, in Southeastern Asia there are 11.5% of children, in Southern Asia 14.4%, and Western Asia has 10.6% of children fighting hunger and starvation.

Source: Food for Life

7. One in 6 children in developing nations is underweight.

Developing nations are the ones that fight the highest rate of hunger. There, one in 6 children, or to be more precise, 100 million children are underweight. They do not take enough food nor enough nutritious food to have a healthy weight and body.

The List of 22 Frightening Childhood Hunger Statistics 2022 - Developing Nations

Source: Food for Life

8. Afghanistan is having a hunger crisis that affects more than 1.5 million children.

Afghanistan is one of the countries with a hunger crisis. A third of the country’s population is facing acute food shortages. That number includes more than 1.5 million children under the age of 5.

Source: Save the Children

9. In Yemen, almost 600,000 children are suffering from acute malnutrition.

Acute malnutrition is a dangerous disease. And children in Yemen are fighting it. Around 590,000 children under the age of 5 suffer from acute malnutrition. That high number includes 100,000 children who are at the edge of starving to death.

Source: Save the Children

10. Nearly 4 million children are facing hunger in Congo.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has 41.7% of the population undernourished. In numbers, 37 million Congolese aren’t getting enough nutrients to stay healthy. Nearly 4 million children under the age of 5 are facing hunger.

Source: Save the Children

11. About 300,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition in South Sudan.

South Sudan also has a high number of children who face hunger and hunger-related diseases. More than half of the country’s population have faced food insecurity in 2020, including nearly 1 million children under the age of 5. Around 300,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition which can have devastating consequences on their health.

Source: Save the Children

12. The countries of the Central Sahel have more than 650,000 children facing severe hunger.

The countries of the Central Sahel, Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso, have more than 650,000 children under the age of 5 who are facing severe hunger. The hunger and famine in the Central Sahel were stimulated by unstable agriculture caused by drought, high food prices, and conflict.

Source: Save the Children and UNICEF

13. Poorly nourished children suffer up to 160 days of illness each year.

Besides malnutrition, hunger can leave other severe consequences on the childrens’ body and health. According to Food for Life, children who are poorly nourished and don’t have enough vital and nutritious-rich food suffer up to 160 days of illness each year. Undernutrition magnifies the effects of diseases such as malaria, severe diarrhea, pneumonia, and measles.

Source: Food for Life

14. In developing countries, 40% of children are anemic and half are iron deficient.

Speaking of hunger-related illnesses, and according to UNICEF, children under the age of 5 in developing countries are anemic and iron deficient. Developing countries have a high hunger rate, especially when we’re talking about children who are the most vulnerable group to fight starvation which leads to severe health problems, and in a lot of cases death too.

The List of 22 Frightening Childhood Hunger Statistics 2022 - Anemic Children

Source: UNICEF

15. About 66 million primary school-age children attend classes hungry in developing countries.

According to the data provided by World Food Programme, a high number of 66 million children who are primary school-age, go to school hungry. This high number is linked to the developing world and it includes 23 million such children in Africa.

Source: World Food Programme

16. The stunting prevalence declined by 11%.

The UNICEF declared that in 17 years, from 2000 to 2017, the rate of stunting prevalence decreased from 33% to 22%. In numbers, we’re talking about a decrease from 198 million stunted children to 151 million of them. Despite the decrease, that is still too high of a number of stunted children.

Source: UNICEF

17. West and Central Africa have had an increase in the number of stunted children.

However, while the world counts an 11% decrease of stunted children, West and Central Africa have had an increase in numbers of stunted childer. The number raised from 3 million children to 29 million of them! That is a shocking increase of children who are stunted due to hunger and starvation.

The List of 22 Frightening Childhood Hunger Statistics 2022 - Africa's Stunted Children

Source: UNICEF

18. In 2017, about half of all stunted children lived in Asia and over one-third in Africa.

Asia has a high number of stunted children too. If we look globally at all the stunted children of 2017, around half of them lived in Asia and over one-third of them in Africa. In Asia, hunger is mostly caused by poverty and inequality, while in Africa, poverty and globalization are the main factors. Climate change is also a big problem there.

Source: UNICEF

19. In 2016, nearly 15,000 children died from starvation every day.

According to the data and statistics provided by the World Health Organization, the year 2016 was terrifying due to the number of children under the age of 5 who died from hunger. That is a high number of 15,000 deaths per day! The number will definitely increase due to the ongoing pandemic and unstable world.

Source: World Health Organization

20. About 3.1 million children die from undernutrition each year.

The UNICEF data states that every year, more than 3 million children die from undernutrition. Undernutrition presents an insufficient intake of nutrients and energy to meet a childrens’ needs to maintain good health. That high number presents 45% of children under the age of 5 who live in developing nations.

Source: UNICEF

21. Every day, more than 10,000 children die from hunger and related causes.

The hunger death rate is quite high when we’re talking about kids. Almost 1 in 15 children dies before the age of 5. That is more than 10,000 children who die from hunger and hunger-related causes every single day. Altogether, that is around 25,000 deaths per day caused by hunger and starvation.

Source: United Nations and DoSomething

22. The risk of a child dying before the age of 5 is the highest in Africa.

If we compare Africa and Europe regarding the hunger child death, the difference is massive. Africa has the highest risk of children dying before they reach the age of 5 – due to hunger. The rate is 76.5 per 1000 live births. That is about 8 times higher than the rate in Europe where is 9.6 per 1000 live births.

Source: World Health Organization

To Wrap It Up

The children are our most precious treasure. And millions of them are fighting food insecurity, hunger, starvation, hunger-caused diseases, and death every single day. The world is trying to help and decrease the high number of hungry children and adults, however, conflict, climate change, the pandemic, and many political and economical factors simply affect too much to make a difference.

Ana
Ana has received a Bachelor’s in Journalism. Through education and volunteering, she has improved her writing skills as well as researching skills which helps her to find the right experts who can educate her about the topic she writes about. Her interest in cooking, home design, and kitchen appliances as well as her technology knowledge ensure her membership in the Kitchentoast team she has joined in 2020. She spends up to 80 hours weekly on researches and writing.