In 2011, one in every four children under 5 years of age worldwide was stunted. The realization that most stunting cannot be explained by poor diet or by diarrhea, nor completely reversed by optimized diet and reduced diarrhea has led to the hypothesis that a primary underlying cause of stunting is subclinical gut disease. This paper suggests that a package of baby-WASH interventions that interrupt specific pathways through which infection occurs in the first two years of a child's life may be central to global stunting reduction efforts.
Mbuya, M.N.N. & Humphrey, J.H. Maternal & Child Nutrition (May 2016). Vol.12.p.p.106–20.