Mental Health Working Group



The Mental Health Working Group (2020-2022) convened a group of interdisciplinary experts from across the world aiming to advance knowledge and research practice for mental health in relationship to agriculture, food security and nutrition (FSN) in low and middle-income countries and to systematise and improve tools, metrics and methods in this intersection.

Its landscape mapping and synthesis work focused on three objectives:

  1. Assess the state of knowledge on mental health as it relates to FNS;
  2. Prioritise key gaps and questions that need to be filled or answered in order to effectively aid research in this nexus; and
  3. Develop guidance and resources on best practice and consolidated approaches for measurement and methodology of linkages between mental health and FNS. 


Interactive evidence and gap map linking food security and nutrition to mental health

Welcome to our interactive Evidence and Gap Map (EGM) of empirical research linking all types of food security and nutrition to mental health. There are 1945 studies mapped here.

If you have any questions or comments, please write to: [email protected]

Screenshot of the Evidence Gap Map linking food insecurity to mental health

Explore the map now:













In this map, you can explore different types of evidence: you can take a broad overview when the map is collapsed; or you can open out columns and rows with the arrows, roll over cells to see a summary of studies in each cell; or you can click on each cell to open a bibliography (which can be downloaded as an RIS file). 

You can also use the ‘Filters’ tab on the upper left to explore the many different aspects of this body of research. For example, you could choose the types of study designs that you want to explore by selecting these (or unselecting those you wish to exclude). You could also select and unselect the types of mental health measures you wish to see in the map. Or you can limit the map by geopolitical zones – income classification, regions, or specific countries!

We hope that this map is a useful tool to navigate this diverse and rapidly-growing body of evidence – and that it will lead to strategic and improved inquiry into this important subject!

Thanks to the fantastic group of Global Mental Health Lab and LSHTM screeners and coders who made the map possible! Contributors: Megan Deeney, Zhuozhi Lin, Xuerui Han, Chiara Lier, Maria Palar, Lambert Felix, Venus Mahmoodi, Vildana Hodzic, Pema Payang, Eliot Golden, Justine Wright and Srishti Sardana.



Systematic evidence and gap map of research linking food security and nutrition to mental health

Nature Communications, August 22

Global Mental Health and Nutrition: Moving Toward a Convergent Research Agenda 

Frontiers in Public Health, October 21



Mental health and ANH research

September 2020

Recording from the ANH Academy webinar on Mental health and ANH research​​​​​


  • Bryan Cheng, Research Fellow, Global Mental Health Lab, Columbia University Teachers College, @GMHLab_TC
  • Thalia Sparling, Research Fellow, IMMANA Programme, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), @SparlingThalia @ANH_Academy @LSHTM

Core members:

  • Herbert Ainamani, Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine, Kabale University, @AinamaniHerbert @kabuniversity
  • Florence Amadi, Senior Technical Advisor for Global Health and Nutrition, Food for the Hungry, @food4thehungry
  • Ricardo Araya Baltra, Professor, Centre for Global Mental Health, King’s College London, @ArayaBaltra_R @KingsIoPPN
  • Camila Corvalán, Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA), University of Chile, @_INFORMAS @INTA_UChile
  • Jillian Emerson, Senior Nutrition Scientist, Vitamin Angels, @vitaminangels
  • Khadija Mitu, Associate Professor, University of Chittagong, @KhadijaMitu3
  • Erin Pfeiffer, Technical Advisor for Global Health and Nutrition, Independent Consultant, Erin Pfeiffer Consulting
  • Marianne Santoso, IMMANA Research Fellow, Northwestern University, @mvsantoso @ResearchNU
  • Nadine Seward, Lecturer, Centre for Implementation Science, King’s College London, @nadineseward @assetKGHI
  • Lena Verdeli, Associate Professor, Columbia University Teachers College, @lenaverdeli @GMHLab_TC

ANH Academy research and communications team:

See some of their ANH Academy member profiles below:

Group Members