- The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Maharashtra is conducting a workshop to educate schools on how a ‘Healthy Menu’ should be prepared in the canteen.
- The first-of-its-kind program in Maharashtra will be organised on July 18, in Thane. Principals of more than 100 schools and colleges will be participating in the workshop.
- Renowned chefs, nutritionist and diet experts will be addressing the teachers and principals on how to make a menu in a school and college canteen which is healthy, tasty and also nutritious.
Obesity is the mother of all the diseases, and childhood obesity continues to be a major concern in today’s society. Almost, one in five children are overweight or obese, and the number is increasing day by day. Recently conducted studies reveal that India has the second highest incidence of childhood obesity, with 14.4 million children are reported to be obese.
According to experts, wrong eating pattern, and consuming high fat, salt and sugary food are the biggest contributors in rising cases of obesity in India. And with no nutritious food available in the school canteen, the children are forced to eat junk food like pizza, vada pav, burgers, samosas which are salty and fattening.
Keeping this in mind the FDA, Maharashtra is conducting a first-of-its-kind workshop to spread awareness about ‘Healthy Menu’ in the schools. The first program will be conducted in Thane on July 18.
While speaking to My Medical Mantra, Dr Pallavi Darade, Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration, Maharashtra said, “A child spends most of his/her time in school. Teachers have a great impact on the children. So, we have organised this workshop to spread awareness among the schools and teachers. Principals of more than 100 schools will participate in this workshop.”
She added, “Schools should have a healthy menu for the children. So, we are concentrating on the high salt, fat and sugary food items. We have issued the guidelines to the schools.”
Dr Darade further added, “In this workshop, we will be giving them a list of 50 dishes as per our standards. These food items are nutritious and healthy. The schools too, have a choice to introduce a new item, but it should be healthy.”
According to experts, targeting the kids at an early stage will help the state bring down the rising cases of obesity. The youth is the future of India, so, by giving them nutritious choices we are making them aware about their health too.
“Schools should be a responsible place for eating. They cannot be any market place. We have received a positive response from the school administration as well,” added Dr Darade.