Nigeria’s average cost of a healthy diet (CoHD) per adult was N786 per day as of December 2023, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
The agency points out that this is an increase of 5.9 percent, or N44, over the N742 reported in November of last year.
Adeyemi Adeniran, the Statistician-General/CEO said this on Wednesday at the launch of a new indicator, the “Cost of a Healthy Diet (COHD).
This indicator was produced in collaboration with esteemed partners such as the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), Federal Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning, Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security.
The Cost of a Healthy Diet (COHD) is the least expensive combination of locally available items that meets globally consistent food-based dietary guidelines, used as a measure of physical and economic access to healthy diets.
This is a lower bound (or floor) of the cost per adult per day excluding the cost of transportation and meal preparation.
The bureau research claims that the highest daily costs of a nutritious diet for an adult were recorded in the states of Ekiti, Osun, and Ondo.
“The National average Cost of a Healthy Diet was N786 per adult per day in December 2023,” NBS said.
“At the State level, Ekiti, Osun and Ondo States recorded the highest cost with N1052, N1017, and N986, respectively, while the lowest total diet costs were recorded in Katsina, Niger and Adamawa at N594, N635, and N654, respectively.”
At the zonal level, the south-west zone had the highest average CoHD at N979 per day, while the south-east zone had the second-highest average at N920 per day.
With an average daily cost of N663, the north-west zone had the lowest average cost of a nutritious diet among all regions.
According to NBS, the most costly food group in the diet is animal-source items (meat, eggs, and dairy), accounting for 38 per cent of spending, even though they only made up 13 per cent of total calories.
Fruits and vegetables were the most expensive food groups in terms of price per calorie; they accounted for 12 percent and 14 percent, respectively, of total CoHD while providing only 7 percent and 5 percent of total calories in the healthy diet basket.