ICMR to set up study to develop solutions to remedy childhood undernutrition

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Source: The post is based on the article “ICMR to set up study to develop solutions to remedy childhood undernutrition” published in The Hindu” on 10th October 2023

What is the News?

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) is forming a team to conduct a research study on improving the nutrition of children aged 6 to 24 months in India.

What is the study ICMR planning to conduct?

ICMR has formed a team to conduct a research study on improving the nutrition of children aged 6 to 24 months in India.

This age range is crucial for a child’s growth and poor nutrition during this time can lead to issues like stunting and undernutrition. 

Complementary feeding is important but faces challenges like inadequate quantity and quality of food, improper feeding practices and timing.

ICMR believes that the current Take Home Ration (THR) program can be enhanced to improve child nutrition.They emphasize the need for not only providing the right food but also ensuring that children actually eat it.

Hence, that’s why ICMR is planning to conduct this study to identify ways to promote proper complementary feeding practices and provide optimal nutrition to reduce childhood undernutrition.

What is Complementary Feeding?

Complementary feeding is defined as the process starting when breast milk alone is no longer sufficient to meet infants’ nutritional requirements, resulting in the need for other foods and liquids along with breast milk.

The ICMR points out several challenges in complementary feeding such as not giving enough or good-quality food, not feeding properly, starting too early or late, and not giving enough food frequently.

What is the Take Home Rations (THR) programme?

The Take Home Rations (THR) programme is part of the Supplementary Nutrition Programme (SNP) under Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS).

It offers fortified rations for use at home for children aged 6 to 36 months as well as pregnant and lactating women, with the goal of bridging the nutrition gap among them. 

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