FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) has recently issued guidelines on making nutritious foods available to school children. To implement this, one of the ways suggested by FSSAI is for the schools to ban the sale of HFSS (High Fat, Sugar, Salt) foods within 50 meters radius of the school. The underlying principles for such a ban is that a) children are not the best judge to choose healthy foods, b) schools are not the right place to promote HFSS foods, c) benefits of traditional nutritious foods cannot be replaced and d) school children need to have better dietary habits.
Although the intention of FSSAI is very good and this is a positive step towards making the children healthier, the implementation might have many hiccups. This method not only requires the school authorities to improve their food / canteen facilities, but also requires regular inspection of the children’s lunch boxes. There are a few schools that are already checking the students’ lunch boxes regularly but this needs to be done at every single school in our country. Secondly, the parents need to play an important role in ensuring that their children carry and eat nutritious foods while at school and at home. Careful planning of meals and buying healthy foods from the grocery shop can go a long way in making meals nutritious. Lastly, children’s participation in shopping, chopping and cooking can also help in increasing awareness and making healthier decisions in food choices.
There has been a lot of debate on whether to use plastic containers / wrappers, for food or not. There’s still no uniform ban on storing food in plastics but I don’t think many researchers are encouraging it either.
All of us know that plastics contain chemicals. There’s no knowing the long term effects of chemicals on food consumed by humans. Some say that BPA (bisphenol A) which is used in making plastics and resins (water bottles, food containers, food cans, bottle tops, etc) can seep into the food or beverage that it carries and may affect brain or prostate of infants and children. However, US FDA says its safe. Some others say that phthalate chemicals used to make soft plastics and also used in cosmetics, can increase blood pressure and cause artery wall damage in children.
While the debate is still on, here are a few steps you can take to reduce plastic use for food –
I’m off on a vacation for 5 weeks and will resume blogging after my return, unless I have something interesting to share during my vacation!
Take care and wish you good health!
Hello Readers! Nutrition, Wellness & Writing – my 3 passions. I’ve decided to combine the 3 and start a blog. Of course, I’ll also write on diet, food and health. There’s already a mountain of information on these topics so why a blog on the same stuff, you might wonder. Well, I’ve no answer to that yet………but I’m going to write and it’s not mandatory for you to follow. I’ll share with you some thoughts, beliefs, experiences, events, anecdotes, interviews, reviews, recipes, and short articles – all related to food, nutrition, diet, health, wellness and ecosystem.