Saturday, 5 October 2013

Hunger and Obesity

Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) , World Food Programme (WFP) and International Fund for Agricultural Development ( IFAD)  define hunger as , 'not having enough food for active and healthy life' and 'an inability to meet dietary energy requirements'.

One in eight people around the world is chronically undernourished  as per the UN food agencies.

Undernourishment is highest in Africa with more than one in five people being affected by it.

Poverty and hunger usually go hand in hand and boosting agricultural productivity is one of the steps taken to reduce hunger. Government policies like Public Distribution Schemes (PDS) , helping people below poverty line and subsidizing food prices are some of the measures under taken but these not adequately enough to minimise hunger. Proper distribution of the food grains is the need of the hour as food-grains lie rotting in the granaries due to bureaucratic red tapism. 
Chronic hunger leads to malnutrition and ultimately  untimely death. 

The leaders of the world should stop fighting wars to establish supremacy but wage a war against evils like hunger.



Obesity is a medical condition in which the  excess body fat is accumulated to such an extent that it has an adverse effect on the physical and mental health of the affected person and it leads to cardiovascular diseases , type II diabetes , obstructive sleep apnea thus deteriorating the quality as well as the life span of a person.

Obesity should not be confused to being healthy. The Indian retort of , 'Khate peete gharane ke hai' and at times obese people are poorly nourished due to excessive intake of fatty foods and lack of physical activities.

Consumption of high fiber food and reduction of fatty foods supplemented with regular exercise under medical guidance are the mantras to reduce obesity.

In very high obese persons, bariatric surgery is performed. There is an increasing trend of child obesity due to high consumption of pizzas, colas , refined and processed foods. The children especially , urban children are exposed to gadgets and the disappearance of playgrounds are the culprits pushing children indoors.

Chronic hunger and Obesity are the two ills that are being faced in our country.
Every grain of food is precious. Do not waste food.
Children in Melghat in Maharashtra are malnourished while  children of well-to-do families are obese.

We have to bridge this yawning gap that exists in our society which is a blot on humanity.

The world is divided between the haves and have-nots. It is a shame that a person have enough to eat while another person starves to death.


Readers , I request you to check this video.

Share My Dabba is an initiative to get food left uneaten in dabbas to hungry street children, using just a Share sticker and the dabbawala network.
Conceived by McCann Mumbai, the initiative is a joint effort between Happy Life Welfare Society and The Dabbawala Foundation.

The Akshaya Patra Foundation's kitchen in Jagatpura, Jaipur starts at 2.a.m. and continues till 7 a.m. preparing tonnes of dal and rice, lakhs of rotis and sabzis, to feed 1.25 lakh school children as part of mid day plans.

Mumbai dabbawalas and Akshaya Patra Foundation's  are two institutions who are implementing the hunger control programme in their own way. Let us bow to them for contributing to the society.

Readers, what can we do in our individual capacity to control hunger as well as save ourselves from the demon of obesity?