WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) this week introduced a bipartisan resolution designating the week of September 23 through September 27, 2019, as “Malnutrition Awareness Week.” Malnutrition is a significant problem in the United States and occurs when a person does not get enough nutrients. The resolution recognizes registered dietitian nutritionists and other nutrition professionals, health care providers, social workers, and advocates for their efforts to advance awareness and to prevent malnutrition. The resolution also recognizes the importance of existing federal nutrition programs for their role in combatting malnutrition and supports continuing resources to prevent and treat malnutrition.
Disease-associated malnutrition costs the U.S. more than $15.5 billion each year. It’s estimated that approximately 6 million children in the U.S. live in food insecure homes and more than half of seniors in the U.S. are at risk of malnutrition.
“It’s important to recognize how malnutrition contributes to poor health outcomes. Millions of Americans are going hungry, including the most vulnerable among us – seniors and kids. Increasing access to healthy, affordable food through our federal nutrition programs is critical to reducing malnutrition and improving quality of life. I’m proud to join Senator Grassley in introducing this resolution,” said Murphy.
“Food insecurity affects people of all ages and from all walks of life. As a long-time champion for American agriculture, I don’t hesitate to speak up for the family farm. America’s farmers feed and fuel the world, and they understand all the work that has to be done before dinner is served. As we recognize Malnutrition Awareness Week, I’ll continue to stand strong for policies that allow farmers to be most productive, strengthen food security and ensure people have access to safe, affordable and nutritious food to eat,” said Grassley.
“The bipartisan Defeat Malnutrition Today Coalition commends Senator Murphy and Senator Grassley for the introduction of a resolution to recognize Malnutrition Awareness Week. This bipartisan resolution is critical to raising national awareness about the growing threat of malnutrition to the health and well-being of older adults. Today one out of every two older adults are at risk of malnutrition. Let us hope this resolution can stimulate additional legislation and policies to address this serious issue,” said Bob Blancato, National Coordinator for Defeat Malnutrition Today Coalition.
Additional Senate co-sponsors of the resolution include U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Shelly Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Angus King (I-Maine), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).
Full text of the resolution can be found here.