Today India is a game changer on the global landscape. But for the progress it has made across all quarters – socially, economically and politically – malnutrition remains the iron chain holding the country back.
Malnutrition affects a vast majority of the Indian population, especially its most vulnerable section, the children. India is home to 400 million children, out of which every second child is malnourished.
The primary reason children suffer from malnutrition in India is due to poverty. With parents who are predominantly uneducated, daily wage earners who struggle to provide for their families, children often don’t have regular access to adequate nutrition. This has a severe impact on the physical, mental and emotional development of children. Due to poor access to nutritious food during their formative years children often suffer from stunted growth, difficulty processing information, trouble developing social skills, concentrating and a host of other issues.
Some of the common nutrient deficiencies that manifest because of malnutrition are Vitamin D (combatted with fortified dairy and grain products), Calcium (prevented by consuming green leafy vegetables, dairy products, nuts, and orange juice), Zinc (found in wheat, oats, pumpkin seeds, milk, nuts, peas), Iodine (found in cheese, milk and table salt) and Vitamin A (in papayas, oranges, carrots, pumpkin, fortified milk and cereals).
The Akshaya Patra Foundation works to combat malnutrition and #EndClassroomHunger in India. Through its healthy, well balanced mid-day meal children are provided with the vital nutrients they require. The programme helps to release children across India from their cycle of hunger by providing them with food for education.
Our children are the future of the country. For every child saved from malnutrition today, India’s future shines a little brighter. Join us to help #EndClassroomHunger.