[ mal-noo-trish-uhn, -nyoo- ]
See synonyms for malnutrition on
  1. lack of proper nutrition; inadequate or unbalanced nutrition.

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Origin of malnutrition

First recorded in 1860–65; mal- + nutrition

Words Nearby malnutrition Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use malnutrition in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for malnutrition


/ (ˌmælnjuːˈtrɪʃən) /

  1. lack of adequate nutrition resulting from insufficient food, unbalanced diet, or defective assimilation

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for malnutrition


[ măl′nōō-trĭshən ]

  1. Poor nutrition caused by an insufficient, oversufficient, or poorly balanced diet or by a medical condition, such as chronic diarrhea, resulting in inadequate digestion or utilization of foods.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Cultural definitions for malnutrition


Inadequate nutrition caused by the lack of a balanced diet or by disorders of the digestive system in which the nutrients from food cannot be absorbed properly.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.