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‘1-in-3 children stunted due to malnourishment’

KV Kurmanath Hyderabad | Updated on November 29, 2019 Published on November 29, 2019

One in every three children under five years of age is stunted due to malnourishment. The first 1,000 days of a child’s life — from conception till they turn three years of age are very crucial,” according to Raj Bhandari, Member (National Technical Board of Nutrition and Health) of NITI Aayog.

“Interventions during this critical window of first 1,000 days are very crucial. Neonatal mortality is very high because of malnutrition,” he says.

Millets can help

Addressing the inaugural of the two-day Nutri-Cereals Conclave-2019 here on Friday, he said millets could help address this crucial problem. “Millets were our staple food for centuries,” he said.

He said malnourishment in children and mothers could impact the productivity of the country, impacting economic growth. “A healthy diet is an entitlement for children,” he added.

A paediatrician by training, Bhandari said only a small percentage of children are getting the Minimum Acceptable Diet (MAD).

He blamed it on lack of diversity in diet. “We need to move away from mono cropping to diversified crops. What we had was not Green Revolution, it is only a grain revolution,” he said.

At the two-day meet organised by the Nutrihub of Indian Institute of Millets Research (IIMR), graduates from the incubator showcased ready-to-eat, ready-to-cook millet products and technologies.

Published on November 29, 2019
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