This refers not to the overt and obvious hunger of poor people who are unable to afford enough to eat, but to a more insidious type caused by eating food that is cheap and filling but deficient in essential vitamins and micronutrients. A World Health Organisation report pointed out recently that this problem is widespread, in particular in the Third World, where families may fill themselves with cheap rice, say, but be unable to afford the fruit, vegetables and meat needed to provide a balanced diet. A related cause is that some of the “green revolution” crops of the 1960s and 1970s that were created specifically to reduce starvation are often short of nutrients such as zinc, iron and vitamin A. The term hidden hunger is not often found outside specialist journals and is more common in news agency copy than in newspapers and magazines: at some point along the road to publication the phrase is blue-pencilled by sub-editors who regard it as jargon. It is sometimes also employed as a general term for the extreme poverty that can exist undetected or unacknowledged in developed countries; it has appeared in this sense in the USA and New Zealand in recent years.
He questioned the rationale behind keeping exotic animals and spending fortunes to feed them while a vast majority of Gambians are plagued by “hidden hunger”.
Africa News Service, Aug. 2002
According to Gautam, apart from absolute hunger stemming from lack of food, there are at least three more types of hunger, for instance, “hidden hunger” for micronutrients such as minerals and vitamins.
Xinhua News Agency, Jun. 2002
Search World Wide Words
Recently added or updated
By hook or by crook; Polish off; Loggerhead; Lame duck; But and ben; Logomaniac; Type louse; Corium; Lie Doggo; Fewmet; Dingbat; Kibosh; Caucus; Oryzivorous; Kick the bucket; Satisficer; Beside oneself; Words of the Year 2015; Peradventure; Sconce; Orchidelirium; How’s your father; Goon; Emoji; Thank your mother for the rabbits; Nonplussed; Bob’s-a-dying; Methinks; Bill of goods.
Support World Wide Words!
Donate via PayPal. Select your currency from the list and click Donate.
Buy from Amazon and get me a small commission at no cost to you. Select your preferred site and click Go!