Maintaining Healthy Diet For Nigerians Soars From N703 To N786- NBS

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) disclosed yesterday that the average cost of maintaining a healthy diet for Nigerian adults has surged from N703 in October to N786 in December 2023.

The announcement came during the unveiling of the “Cost of a Healthy Diet (CoHD)” indicator report by Adeyemi Adeniran, the Statistician-General of the Federation. Adeniran explained that the CoHD is a comprehensive measure assessing both the financial and physical accessibility of healthy diets, revealing the least expensive combination of locally available foods that align with international dietary guidelines.

Developed in collaboration with various federal ministries and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, this indicator serves as a vital tool to understand the current nutritional landscape and affordability across the nation.

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Highlighting regional disparities, Adeniran shared that in October 2023, the South-East had the highest average CoHD at N918 per adult per day, while the North-East reported the lowest at N605.

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State-level variations were stark, with Anambra, Ebonyi, and Enugu recording the highest costs and Niger, Adamawa, and Bauchi the lowest. Surprisingly, despite a marginal drop to N742 in November, the National average CoHD rebounded to N786 in December.

The South-West experienced the highest costs at N979, compared to the North-West’s N663. Ekiti, Osun, and Ondo led the states with the highest costs, while Katsina, Niger, and Adamawa reported the lowest.

Adeniran emphasized that animal food sources accounted for a significant portion of the overall CoHD, contributing to 38-39% during the three months under review. Fruits and vegetables emerged as the most expensive food group per calorie, while legumes, nuts, and seeds proved to be the least expensive, constituting only six percent of the total cost.

As the nation grapples with rising food prices, the CoHD report serves as a stark reminder of the challenges many Nigerians face in maintaining a healthy diet amidst economic pressures.

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