Everything about Millets (POSHAN) power
Focus of Poshan Pakhwada (20th March to 3rd April 2023) includes popularizing Millets ‘Shree Anna’- the mother of all grains, as a valuable asset to address malnutrition. Millets are nutritionally rich foods which could contribute significantly to the food and nutritional security of the world. Recognizing the importance of millets in ensuring global nutrition sufficiency, the year 2023 was declared the International Year of Millets (IYM) by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). The Government of India has been actively promoting and spreading awareness about the benefits of millets (Shree Anna) for the cultivator, consumer and climate. Also, during the ongoing Poshan Pakhwada in this PoshanWeekly, we are happy to share relevant materials and information on the promotion of millets in India. Diets amongst young children and adolescents lack diversity and essential micronutrients causing hidden hunger. In fact, in India, according to the CNNS (2016-18), 1 in 2 adolescents suffer from 2 or more micronutrient deficiencies. Millets are high in both macro and micronutrients, proteins, dietary fiber and are a good source of calcium and phosphorus. Therefore, encouraging the intake of millets as part of a healthy diet could advance adolescent and child nutrition. Furthermore, including millets in meals emphasizes the importance of having healthy and nutritious diets for overall growth and development of children and adults. A social movement, Jan Andolan involving multi-sectoral promotion of millets with the government, the civil society, academia, businesses and local communities is required to channelize the potential of millets towards food and nutritional sufficiency for every child, family, community and the nation. We hope you find this useful in furthering your advocacy efforts towards promoting millets as part of healthy diets and eating practices for every child and adult during this Poshan Pakhwada.