Awareness critical to improving malnutrition
The Nutrition Society of Nigeria has said that the only way to improve the well being of Nigerians is by ensuring that they have improved nutritional knowledge which would enable them make better choices in diets.
Speaking at the Nutrition Education Programme organised in Lagos, Professor Ngozi Nnam, President, Nutrition Society of Nigeria, noted that nutrition is the bedrock of development, and for an individual to develop well that individual needs to feed well”.
According to statistics, the nutritional status shows a prevalence of all forms of malnutrition with about 37%f our children stunted, 29 per cent underweight and 18 per cent wasted.
Nigerian remains one of the first 20 countries with the highest burden of malnutrition it shows.
She said: “Poverty rate is not the major cause of malnutrition in Nigeria because, most of these people we say are “poor”, around their environments, they have fruits that could really make them be in good nutritional status. The problem is not poverty, the problem is that they lack nutrition knowledge.
“I must also encourage Nigerians to ensure they consume foods that are fortified with essential micronutrients such as fortified margarine, iodized salt, fortified flours and others.”
“Nnam noted that this is why NSN has taken the lead in partnership with Unilever, through the Blueband Social Mission to address nutrition education challenges in Nigeria.
Dr. Abimbola Ajayi, Director of Nutrition, Lagos State Ministry of Health pointed out that if Nigerians wanted to build the nation, nutrition needs to be taken seriously.
According to her malnutrition results when our dietary intake is inadequate, saying, “This means not eating foods in the right quantity to match our physiological requirements and activity level, not having meals that can provide our daily nutrient needs in terms of energy, carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins and minerals, and water..
Earlier Victor Ajieroh, Nutrition and Health Manager, Unilever Nigeria, said, nutrition is a major focus area for Unilever and fits into the objectives of the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan.