“GOOD NUTRITION BEGINS WITH FOOD AND AGRICULTURE”
Agriculture and nutrition both begin with the word “Food.” Food is a major byproduct of agricultural practices and as a result, a key component of healthy nutrition. The much evidence, research shows that there’s a lot more to nutrition than just having food. The food which is going to consume by the people must be nutritious which means, the food contains all the elements and nutrition which is required for our body for the proper growth and development. So, the food what we eat must be balanced with proper nutrient.
According to “Ending Poverty and Hunger by 2030: An Agenda for the Global Food System,” a visionary report from the World Bank, was published. The report urges main partners and partnerships to join forces to form the evolution of the global food system to eradicate poverty and hunger by 2030. It calls for a greater emphasis on climate-smart agriculture, improved nutritional outcomes, and the creation of more inclusive and productive food value chains.
There was a time where people were undernourished due to lack of availability of foods but nowadays people are being undernourished even though they are consuming nutritious food sufficiently because we are eating the low nutrient content food which can end our appetite and can’t give enough nutrient to our body at the required level. And the second reason is that people are eating unhealthy, non-nourished foods like junk food, Chauchau, Kurkure, etc. in which there is no nutrient content but yes junk food has the chemical compound which can affect our body badly and can cause the disease like cancer, ulcer, diabetes, kwasiworker, marasmus, malnutrition, etc. Without proper feeding of a balanced diet or foods, we can be suffered from malnutrition. Malnutrition has many forms like undernutrition, micronutrient deficiency, obesity, or overweight.
In the rural areas, the people are suffering from undernutrition mainly and in the urban areas, the people are suffering from obesity.
Only agriculture, can’t eliminate the food nutrition insecurity problem. So, good nutrition is not the only outcome of economic status and social development. Nowadays it’s become a challenge to achieve good nutrition and it’s becoming more and more complex. The consumption of junk food, processed food is increasing day by day rapidly, it causes the symptoms of Malnutrition like obesity, overweight, diabetes, etc.
Nutrition and Agriculture Relation
Malnutrition can happen when we don’t get enough or as much as required nutrients from that food. So, in general agriculture gives food to humans and humans consumed it then the human body takes the required nutrients from that food. So, agriculture has an essential and singular role to ensure food security in this world. To be a better nutritious and healthy man the agriculture must be improved.
In previous times the agriculture systems, methods, technology, etc were only focused on increasing food production and earning money to reduce malnutrition, poverty and hunger. In this type of civilization, there was maximum food production but didn’t know about nutrition content, qualitative production and their functions and works. People had been facing many malnutrition problems like kwasiworker, marasmus, etc. So agriculture must be nutrition-sensitive.
And nowadays people know that only the increment in the production of food doesn’t eradicate or eliminate malnutrition, poverty, and hunger due to lack of nutritive quality. So, people are continuing agricultural practices with increasing qualitative production too. By applying different new or modified agricultural techniques, equipment, hybrids seeds, etc.
In urban areas, there are problems of obesity (overnutrition)
But in rural areas, there are problems of undernutrition which is caused by imbalanced diets, micro-nutrients, etc.
Good Nutrition and Women
In the case of Nepal or other developing countries, a large percentage of agricultural fieldwork is covered by women. Because of many different reasons like poverty, low economy and brain-drain so many men are chosing abroad to earn money and help their family and their future. Women are more involved in cooking and preparing meals, and working in the fields. Women’s education, socioeconomic status, fitness, and nutritional status, as well as resource management, are all significant factors that influence nutrition outcomes. Gender-sensitive agricultural projects will help women keep more control over their resources and have a say in what crops they grow. So, women’s education, empowerment is also very important for securing food security.
Smallholders farmers, Agriculture and Nutrition
Smallholders farmers of developing countries are responsible for producing 80% of total food production. They are also responsible for the food security of the country. The smallholder farmers play an important role in improving nutrition by providing food for themselves, communities, urban areas, and the whole country. Smallholders farmers are also facing or suffering from poor quality food and diets and having malnutrition due to inadequate and imbalanced consumption of their own food and lack of access to other foods. Smallholders plays an important role to maintain food security in the country and also, the cultivating method and practices also affect the nutrient availability of the foods.
Improving the Nutrient With Agriculture
- Crop nutrient value can be increased by biofortification and improved soil quality, as well as improved storage, preservation, and processing. Improved manufacturing, refining, or marketing efficiency, as well as waste reduction, can lower the relative cost of more nutritious foods or shorten the time it takes to prepare them, making them more appealing as a diet part.
- Production diversification can be achieved by introducing new crops or production systems/patterns
- Agricultural innovations and production methods have the potential to improve product variety and nutritional value.
- The policies, laws, trade, and public investments also affect the production of nutritious foods. So the policies, strategies, laws. Trades must be in the favor of nutritional food, agriculture, and healthy human health.
- Education and information are also very essential and important to secure food security in the country. By giving them knowledge about human health and nutritious foods relationship, their importance, their limitations and also can be given the education about growing highly qualitative and quantitative agricultural products with proper precautions.
- PPP(public-private partnership) the governmental offices should work on the field with PPP with different organizations which will be more effective.