According to this 2018 Wordbank report, malnutrition is a critical contributing factor to the cycle of intergenerational poverty in the Philippines. Across the country, up to 1/3 of all children under 5 are stunted or wasted (which are the main factors in recognizing malnutrition), and little if any improvement has been seen over the last 15 years or so. Wasting (low weight for age) has been stable at around 7%, while stunted children (low height for age) comprise 33%. Excluding the NCR the percentage is closer to 40%. The malnourishment and disease that are the cause of widespread stunting impede the development of young brains. The result is impaired cognitive and socioemotional skills and lower levels of schooling. And that is in large part the cause for this: PISA = program for international student assessment (OECD) TIMSS = trends in international Math and Science study (IEA) Not hard to conclude/predict that the Philippines will remain ill equipped to spread the wealth from economic growth to the poorest sections of society while the malnutrition issue is unsolved.