With the hope of reducing the risks of malnourishment in children under age five, World Food Day will take place this year with the theme, “Climate is changing. Food and agriculture must too.”
In 1979, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) declared October 16 as a day to acknowledge the fight against hunger, malnutrition and poverty. Groups such as the UN General Assembly and the World Health Organization support this day in consideration of the fact that food is a “…requisite for human survival and well-being and a fundamental human necessity.”
Led by WHO, this year the conversation will focus on early childhood development as a result of the conclusions of the last series of The Lancet’s new Series, Advancing Early Childhood Development: from Science to Scale, which found that low cost interventions can revert the risk of 249 million children under the age of five of not reaching their full potential due to extreme poverty and stunted growth.
One of the methods of prevention is to provide education on a healthy diet for children. The guide from the Harvard School of Public Health, Kid’s Healthy Eating Plate, provides eight keys to children having a balanced diet:
- Prioritize eating vegetables. The more, the better.
- Eat fruits of all colors.
- Avoid processed grains.
- Choose plant-based healthy proteins and choose white meats over red meats.
- Use plant-based oils such as olive oil.
- Reduce the intake of dairy products and choose those that have no added sugar.
- Increase your intake of water.
- Incorporate physical activity in your child’s life.