Food scientists studying if pre-school children are eating nutritive foods

Balanced nutrition profile for anganwadi children on the anvil

February 04, 2017 10:43 pm | Updated 10:43 pm IST - MYSURU:

As many as 250 anganwadis from across the district have been covered in the study that began in January.

As many as 250 anganwadis from across the district have been covered in the study that began in January.

Food scientists and research scholars from the Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) are assessing if pre-school children from anganwadis in Mysuru district are consuming the right nutrients or require more nourishment for healthy growth.

The total number of calories and nutritional foods the children were consuming daily is under study. The institute is likely to come out with a balanced nutrition profile for child nourishment that is suitable for pre-school children from all regions.

As many as 250 anganwadi centres from across the district had been covered in the study that began in January this year. The CFTRI is planning to submit its report to the government in March.

“The results of the study will be out next month. We wanted to study the nutritional supplements being given to these children. The Department of Women and Child Development has supported us with its inputs. We are studying whether the children are getting the right nutrition at the delivery point,” said Ram Rajashekaran, Director, CFTRI, Mysuru.

Speaking to The Hindu, Prof Rajashekaran said nutrition was a crucial component of a child’s health and growth. “Our job has been to make a practical assessment. We got the food samples from the centres and are examining them,” he said.

The director said the study would go on till the next month and the results would be out by the end of March. “If necessary, we will make recommendations that can be incorporated in the regular diet.”

Sometime ago, the CFTRI had developed five nutritional food products for children from anganwadis in Mysuru. These foods had been prepared by the premier food research laboratory to address nutritional deficiencies among pre-school children.

The CFTRI developed the products to complement the existing Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) feeding solution via anganwadis.

Rice mix, high protein rusk, energy food, nutri-chikki with Spirulina, nutri-sprinkle, sesame paste and fortified mango bars were the products. These were comprehensive in the nutrition profile with and had the requisite macro and micronutrients for the pre-school children.

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