School of Medicine Publications and Presentations

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Abstract. It is an unquestionable fact that the economic development and subsistence of nations depend highly on the health and adequate nutritional status of their economically active population. The concern arises in the light of evidence on adult nutritional deficiencies in some social strata of our country. Malnutrition is the pathological state that results from the inadequate consumption of one or more essential nutrients. Clinically it is manifested by biochemical tests and anthropometric indicators, and affects the response of the individual to different processes of disease as well as to the established therapies. Malnutrition is associated to loss of corporal fat mass and to a certain degree to the loss of muscle mass. In addition, malnutrition is associated to: a) alteration of the immunity; b) retardation in the healing of wounds or appearance of ulcers by hyperpressure; c) falls; d) cognitive deterioration; e) osteopenia; f ) alteration in the metabolism of drugs; g) sarcopenia; h) reduction of the maxima respiratory capacity. In Venezuela, there are population sub-groups that, due to their special social and economical status, are at a higher risk of developing nutritional problems. Studies (1997 to 2004) have shown that malnutrition and other nutritional deficiencies are present with variable intensity in both adults and the elderly. It is logical to think that when household food security is compromised, all family members are harmed, specially the children, pregnant women and the elderly. This is the reason why it is necessary to have a surveillance system that monitors the nutritional status of low-income adults and elderly from a just sanitary justice point of view, as well as the development of health and nutrition interventions and social support.

Publication Title

Anales Venezolanos de Nutrición

Academic Level


Mentor/PI Department




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