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Nutrition week to improve national nutrition status

Update: October, 13/2015 - 18:33

Health workers introduce mothers how to eat a healthy, balanced diet and ensure food hygiene and safety in the nothern Cao Bang Province. — Photo soytecaobang.gov.vn

HA NOI (VNS) — Nutrition and Development Week, to be launched by the National Institute of Nutrition nation-wide on Friday, aims to strengthen public awareness of nutrition and reduce the malnutrition rate.

The annual event will focus on creating social welfare policies and ensuring sustainable agriculture development, aiming to reduce poverty and improve nutrition across the country.

During the week, a communication campaign will focus on raising community awareness on how to eat a healthy, balanced diet and ensure food hygiene and safety. It will also promote a healthy lifestyle through regular physical exercise for obesity prevention.

The health ministry will collaborate with the agricultural sector to provide guidelines on proper cultivation techniques for farmers and to develop VAC (garden-pond-livestock pen) integrated farming systems---a Vietnamese approach to household production of clean nutritious food.

Social welfare activities will take place nation-wide, focusing on hunger and poverty reduction and improvements in medical service quality, especially for nutritional care services for mothers and children.

Deputy Director of the National Institute of Nutrition under the Ministry of Health Le Bach Mai said supplements of micro nutrients such as iodine, vitamin A and iron added to daily meals are a basic measure to prevent malnutrition.

Mai added that the health ministry intends to propose that the Government should issue a decree obligating food producers to add micro nutrients, including iodine, vitamin A, iron and zinc, to foods such as fish sauce, salt, cooking oil and wheat flour. This would help reduce the malnutrition rate in the country's children and improve the people's health across the country.

A recent NIN survey showed that an unbalanced diet is among the top causes of malnutrition in the country. In 2014, the number of underweight children was some 24.9 per cent of the country's total children, while the rate of stunted growth was 14.5 per cent amongst children. — VNS

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