Getting a balanced diet
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CTA. 2007. Getting a balanced diet. Rural Radio Resource Pack 07/6. Wageningen, The Netherlands: CTA.
Permanent link to cite or share this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/57172
The most vitamin, mineral, protein and carbohydrate-packed foods
Getting a balanced diet Cue: Sun, good soil and adequate rainfall are three of the basics that any farmer needs to get a good harvest. These days farmers and farming communities affected by HIV/AIDS need to think not just about what their crops need but what the human body needs to cope with the stress of infection from serious diseases. Helen Khunga works with the Consortium for Agricultural and Nutrition, AIDS Reliance and Markets in Zambia. As she explained to Chris Kakunta, there is a lot that farmers can do to provide their families ? and their customers ? with a balanced diet. IN: ?When you talk of a? OUT: ?deterioration of the person.? DUR?N: 4?02? BACK ANNOUNCEMENT: That was Helen Khunga ending that report from Zambia. To prevent malnutrition, she recommends eating high energy foods such as pumpkins, body-building foods such as cowpeas and protective foods like spinach. The interview comes from a resource pack produced by CTA. Transcript Khunga When you talk of a balanced diet in the first place you should be mindful that you are looking at the three key elements in terms of the food crops. That is the energy-giving foods, the body-building foods and the protective foods, these are very key. We try and look at the combination of crops that we tell the farmers to grow that can be grown on smallscale and also large scale. Kakunta Maybe we narrow down to those that are affected by HIV and AIDS, how can they ensure that they have a balanced diet? Khunga We try to make sure that in the first place we will look at, do they have manpower in the household? If they have manpower we do try and help them by starting small and by starting small we mean can they afford to grow something in the backyard? If they are not able to even start small we start by giving them targeted food assistance and this is the package where we gave carbohydrate and protein to try and help them get at least the basic needs for the body. But for those that are completely incapacitated we try and see if they can be linked into other members of the community that can do food for work on behalf of those families that are completely incapacitated so that they can also afford to grow the crops that we recommend for people that are HIV positive or those that have HIV and AIDS. Kakunta What about those that are ill but have the capacity, what type of foods do you recommend for them and maybe could you cite some examples so that as we go on we will be very clear as to what is required? Khunga Ok for those that have the capacity normally we do recommend crops like cassava as energy-giving foods for example sorghum, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, they are easy to grow and normally they do not require fertilisers because we are looking at a group that might not have the resources to back up. And then also we would encourage them to grow body-building foods and in this category we are looking at groundnuts, soya beans and bambara nuts which they can grow easily again without the add on of artificial fertilisers. And among the protective foods we would encourage them to grow vegetables like spinach for example or any dark green vegetables that they have and also consumption of cassava leaves. Kakunta And do you think this is a very balanced diet? Khunga That is the energy-giving foods, the body-building foods and the protective foods. All the three critical food groups that are important for a balanced diet. Kakunta Have you made some strides in as far as ensuring that your target audience have a balanced diet? Kunga For example if I am going to give an example of a farmer who is incapacitated financially and they might not be able to have fertilisers I would recommend for example sorghum or pumpkins for their energy building foods which can easily grow without fertilisers. And for the body-building foods I would recommend them to grow cowpeas for example which is very easy to grow, the leaves can be used as protective foods while the peas can be used as body-building foods. So that combination even for a farmer that is incapacitated helps provide the family with a basic balanced diet that they need. Kakunta How important is a balanced diet? Khunga The balanced diet is very critical for somebody who is living with HIV and AIDS because one it will help them delay the onset of the disease. Kakunta And without a balanced diet what will happen? Khunga Definitely you are likely to go into micronutrient deficiency and eventually you might have malnutrition which causes a speedy deterioration of the person. End of track