Traditional food, particularly those made of small grains, will not only improve the health of the people but also lessen the chances of attack of non-communicable diseases, and control malnutrition to a larger extent, according to Collector K.S.Palanisamy.

Inaugurating a seminar on ‘Propagation of traditional food and improving use of small grains’ at Cumbum near on Tuesday, he said traditional food like coconut, small grains, and other traditional agri-produces like cotton and soap nuts were useful to the people. But many people did not know their value, he added.

Earlier, traditional food items had played an integral role in people’s lives, providing nutrition to them and ensuring strong connection between the community and the land.

For example, tender coconut that had low density lipoprotein cholesterol and 569 mg of potassium, was good for heart, liver functioning and balancing dehydration, and it was the best medicine for anxiety and depression, he said.

Small grains like ‘varagu,’ ‘samai,’ ‘pani varagu,’ and ‘kudiraivali,’ that had high medicinal value would cure intestinal disorders, prevent asthma and they were the best food for diabetic patients.