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13/January/2021   Society

WHO urges governments to promote healthy food in schools, childcare centers and hospitals

TASHKENT, January 13. /Dunyo IA/. Public settings, such as schools, childcare centers, nursing homes, hospitals and correctional facilities and all other canteens of public institutions, can play a key role in ensuring people are provided with healthy food and helping prevent the 8 million annual deaths currently caused by unhealthy diets, reports “Dunyo” IA correspondent.

According to WHO, consuming a healthy diet from pre-birth to the last days of life is vital to prevent all forms of malnutrition as well as diabetes, cancers and other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). 

WHO recommends:

limit sodium consumption and ensure that salt is iodized;

limit the intake of free sugars;

shift fat consumption from saturated fats to unsaturated fats;

eliminate industrially-produced trans fats;

increase consumption of whole grains, vegetables, fruit, nuts and pulses; and

ensure the availability of free, safe drinking water.

WHO experts note that some countries worldwide have already taken steps to promote healthy diets in public facilities.

In Brazil, the National School Feeding Programme requires 30% of the budget to be used to purchase food from family farms, and requires menus to be based on fresh or minimally processed foods based on the region's sustainability, seasonality and agricultural diversification. 

To improve the health of children, the Republic of Korea established Green Food Zones that regulate the food available within a 200 meter radious of schools. In these zones, businesses may not sell food that falls above a set threshold for calories per serving, total sugars and saturated fats.

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