World Food Day: 12 nutritious foods helping kids fight malnutrition in Asia

by Guest
Horse radish

Story courtesy of World Vision Canada

World Food Day (WFD)–October 16–was founded by the United Nations’ (UN) in 1945 to increase awareness of world hunger and poverty and to inspire solutions for change. Approximately 805 million people in the world, or 1 in 9 people, suffer from hunger every year, and hunger and malnutrition are linked to one third of all child deaths around the world. Five children die every minute because they are not eating enough healthy food.

So why does this still happen in a world of abundance? Millions of children enter the world at a disadvantage because their parents cannot provide enough healthy food, and are therefore born with the burden of malnutrition. Yet overcoming hunger and malnutrition doesn’t require medical breakthroughs, and is simpler than you think. For World Food Day, World Vision provides these 12 nutritious food solutions grown and made in Asia that are helping give children the healthy food they need to survive and thrive.

Pomelos are a crisp citrus fruit native to South and Southeast Asia. They are rich in Vitamin-C. “My friends and I love bananas, pomelos, oranges, and jack-fruit very much. The fruits are delicious and tasty. They are very good for our nutrition,” says Phan Thi Thao, 14 yrs old, Vietnam. ©Phan Thi Thao Nguyen Thuy/World Vision

Vegetable rice lentil mash
Vegetable-rice-lentil mash is one of the meals lactating and young mothers cook together for their children. They learnt to make it along with cereal porridge and rice pudding as different highly nutritious meals they can serve their children. ©Annila Harris/World Vision

Pumpkin leaves
Green leafy vegetables like pumpkin leaves help to make meals more nutritious for children. Vanda, age 2, is helps her mother and brother to search for pumpkin leaves because her mother plans to cook Samlor Pro Her (Cambodian fish soup with mix vegetables) for dinner. ©Ratana Lay/World Vision

Turmeric, a spice of the ginger family, grown in Southeast India has nutritional qualities that benefit the body and brain. ©Michelle Siu/World Vision

Eggplant is one of the many nutritious vegetables grown in family gardens in Bangladesh. These family gardens help to feed the family healthy foods, and also provide them with extra income. ©Neuton Rony Das/World Vision

Jack fruit
Jack fruit, the largest tree-borne fruit, is the national fruit of Bangladesh. It is rich in Vitamin C and can be grown by families to help keep children healthy. ©Neuton Rony Das/World Vision

Radishes are rich in folic acid and potassium. They are good source of vitamin B6 and calcium, too. Radishes can be easily grown in Cambodia providing families with a healthy addition to their meals. ©Anthony Luk/World Vision

Soybeans are an excellent source of protein and have a variety of uses like oil, flour, infant formula, and other products. Soybeans without the skin are healthier – women in India are learning this during nutrition trainings that are helping them to expand their nutritionally improving recipes for their children and families. ©Annila Harris/World Vision

Special Bobor
Special Bobor (a thick rice porridge made from rice and ingredients from all the food groups that is nutritionally adequate for an infant.) is the recommended complementary food in Cambodia. It is often the food used in nutrition demonstration cookings to teach mothers about what to feed their children to keep them healthy. ©Sopheak Kong/World Vision

Horse radish
Horse radish is grown in western Asia (in the Philippines in this picture). It contains a good amount of dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants. Horse radish root spice has vital minerals such as sodium, potassium, and iron. It is also rich in vitamin C. When asked why she eats and loves vegetables, 7-year-old Mayreen said, “My favorite is kalamunggay (horse radish), and I love to eat vegetables because my mother said vegetables can make me a brighter a child.” ©Maryann Zamora/World Vision

Eggs and nuts
Eggs and nuts are equivalent to lifesavers in certain areas like Melghat in India. A single boiled egg contains all the nutrients required to turn a single cell into a baby chicken making them highly nutritious to eat containing a little bit of every nutrient children need to be healthy. Nuts have it all – they are rich in energy, protein, and are packed with vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids. ©Annila Harris/World Vision

A mother’s breast milk is rich with all the nutrients needed for her baby’s healthy. Breastfeeding provides total food security, with high nutritional value, for the baby and optimize a child’s physical and mental growth and development. Improved breastfeed practices worldwide could save the lives of 800,000 children annually. ©Michelle Siu/World Vision

The One Goal campaign is a partnership initiative of World Vision, the Asian Football Confederation, The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), DSM, and the Asian Football Development Project that seeks to bring awareness to the issue of child malnutrition in Asia and powerfully inspire and mobilise the football community to take action to increase the number of children in Asia who survive and thrive.

Join the movement for nutrition for every child:

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