Malnutrition Interventions

Treating Pregnant Women with Moderate Malnutrition in Malawi

Using peanut butter, Manary helps pregnant moms
PMIL's Mark Manary making progress with Malnurition Interventions project
Q&A with Mark Manary

By treating moderately malnourished pregnant women with different nutritional supplements and measuring their newborn babies, researchers are finding which nutritional supplement is best: one made of peanuts or one made of a corn-soy blend.

The study considers both the mother’s condition (recovery and arm circumference), as well as the infant’s health (mean birth weight, mean birth length, and percentage of premature delivery).

Women visited 15 study sites in rural Malawi where they were seen by study volunteers and clinic staff. Most babies were measured within 24 hours of delivery, and follow-up continued for three months.

The study may provide evidence that using a peanut-based supplementary food reduces maternal mortality and improves infant growth and development. This will provide national and international agencies with evidence to recommend and promote the use of peanut-based products for maternal health, as well as purchase some for use in their nutrition programs.

Lead Scientist

Dr. Mark J. Manary, Medical Doctor

More about Manary

Research Collaborators

California Technical State University

  • Dr. Peggy Papathakis

University of Malawi

  • Dr. Ken Maleta
  • Dr. Chrissie Thakwalakwa

Partner Institution

Washington University St. Louis Logo

Research Location



October 16, 2013 - July 31,2017

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