Despite efforts to stem malnutrition, children across Africa remain deeply impacted, says the Global Nutrition Report launched this week in Abidjan.
The report says Africa is the only region where absolute numbers are rising, due to population growth.
At least 10 million children in Africa are now classified as overweight, out of 41 million world over.
Up to 59 million children on the continent are stunted-too short for their age due to lack of nutrients and suffering irreversible damage to brain capacity.
African economies lose between 1.9 and 16.5% of gross domestic product annually to undernutrition, due to increased mortality, absenteeism, and chronic illnesses and associated costs, and lost productivity.
Some 14 million children are wasted-too thin for their height.
Almost every country in the world now faces a serious nutrition-related challenge, whether stemming from undernutrition, obesity, or non-communicable diseases.
The gathering brings together high-profile global leaders, 60 countries and 700 participants to discuss how to tackle malnutrition
"The problem of malnutrition, be it undernutrition or obesity, is an alarming public health problem and real global concern. Malnutrition is at the heart of the problem of fighting extreme poverty, and an important dimension of social and human development," said Daniel Kablan Duncan, Vice-President of Côte d'Ivoire.