India currently has one of the highest numbers of malnourished children in the world – 8% stunted, 43% underweight, and 20% overweight and obese. This distressing public health scenario is further exacerbated by a high prevalence of multiple micronutrient deficiencies among these mchildren – such as iron deficiency anaemia and Vitamin A deficiency. Evidence shows linkages between early life malnourishment (either underweight or overweight-obesity) and predisposition to developing chronic diseases in adult life. Consuming 400g/day of fresh fruits and vegetables can help prevent micronutrient deficiencies while promoting overall growth and development.
However, national averages indicate that children do not consume even 40% of the daily recommended amounts.
This research is supported by the Department for International Development’s by the Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia (LANSA) programme
Shweta Khandelwal, Anne Marie Thow, Karen R. Siegel, Nida I. Shaikh, Divya Soni, Garima Verma, Deepa Soni, Deepti Beri. Strengthening fruit and vegetable supply-chain policies and programmes in India. Research Brief No.4, May 2017, 4p