Hypertension Management: 5 Green Vegetables That May Help Manage Blood Pressure

Hypertension Management: 5 Green Vegetables That May Help Manage Blood Pressure�

High blood pressure or hypertension is defined as a condition where the force of blood against the artery walls is higher than it is supposed to be. High blood pressure is one of the most common ailments around the world. According to WHO, raised blood pressure affects 1.13 billion people worldwide. Monitoring diet and lifestyle habits is a crucial component of blood pressure management. Foods high in sodium, refined oil or trans-fats are not advisable to include in a high blood pressure diet as they tend to put immense pressure on blood vessels, which restricts blood flow and raise pressure.  You should instead include fruits and vegetables that are rich in fibres and antioxidants. According to experts, green and leafy vegetables are an ideal bet for high blood pressure patients. They are enriched with many vitamins and minerals that could help check surge in blood pressure levels. 


Here are 5 green vegetables that may help manage blood pressure levels:


1. Spinach:

Spinach is an excellent source of potassium. Potassium helps negate the ill-effects of sodium in the body. It also helps the kidney eliminate excess sodium from the body through urination. In addition to potassium, spinach is enriched with heart-friendly nutrients like folate and magnesium. The leafy wonder is also a good source of lutein. Lutein is instrumental in preventing thickening of walls of arteries, which helps reducing the risk of strokes and blood pressure.

(Also Read: Spinach Nutrition: Amazing Cooking Tips And Health Benefits)


2. Celery:

This negative-calorie food is an excellent addition you can make to your high blood pressure diet. According to the book, ‘Healing Foods’ by DK publishing House, “Celery is a good source of coumarin, which helps lower blood pressure  and aid water balance, and phthalides , anti-coagulants that reduce the risk of blood clots and stroke and lower stress-hormone levels.”

3. Cabbage:

You can add them to stews, have them stir-fried or blend them in juices; cabbage is a one versatile veggie that should find a place in your diet for a variety of reasons, one of them being its ability to keep a check on blood pressure. Hundred grams of cabbage has about 170 grams of potassium. Before cooking, make sure you have washed the cabbage well. There could be many pests and bacteria hidden within the leaves.


Cash transfer can up nutrition intake

Cash transfer can up nutrition intake

pregnant womenAmit Bhatt

Updated: Nov 16, 2018, 06:10 AM IST

At the time when combating malnutrition in children, pregnant and  lactating mothers is a major concern for government in order to curb Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) in the state, a recently conducted survey brought out compelling revelations that as many as 80.8% of women in the state favour cash transfer as a practical means to facilitate nutrition intake for themselves and their children. It is worth mention here that as per experts, women’s ability to conveniently purchase food of their choice and increased variety in consumed food is the most commonly cited benefit of receiving direct cash support.

The survey was conducted by a social organization across 5 districts of Rajasthan including Ajmer, Baran, Jodhpur, Sirohi and Udaipur, with the objective of assessing people’s feedback on existing nutrition support scheme of the Government and the opinion of women on receiving direct cash support for fulfilling nutritional intake of pregnant and lactating women and infants below 3 years of age. “Survey across the five districts gives us a view of the sense of activism and preferences amongst women in Rajasthan towards accomplishing their nutrition needs. While there is good general awareness amongst women about government schemes for nutrition, direct cash transfer for nutritional intake is being viewed as an impactful mode of supplementing the current programs” Pradip Bhandari, Founder & CEO of Jan Ki Baat, the social organization conducted the survey, said.

In Rajasthan child malnutrition remains a major public health concern. National Family Health Survey(NFHS- 4) has shown that 39.1% of children under five years are stunted, 36.7% are underweight, and 23% are wasted. Anaemia prevalence in children is as high as 60.3% and amongst women 46.8%.

“In cases where people faced problem in receiving services of current scheme, the key reason was distance from Anganwadi Centres. Women working as agricultural labourers and cultivators also expressed inability to leave work and let go of the wage in order to travel to Anganwadi Centres for availing supplementary nutrition.  The survey also brought to the fore compelling findings such as caste and class play a significant role in accessing the existing supplementary nutrition scheme, as a notable number of upper caste women who were surveyed expressed inhibitions towards consumption of ration being provided through Anganwadi centres,” said Bhandari.

The survey also identified that 80% of women are of the opinion that chances of misuse of the government money given to women for consuming nutritive food is minimal.



Focus on under-nutrition among children at meet on nutrition challenges

Focus on under-nutrition among children at meet on nutrition challenges

The third National Council on India’s Nutrition Challenges meet which was held here on Wednesday focused on under-nutrition among children, anaemia and diarrhoea and newer strategies to be brought in under Poshan Abhiyaan to tackle and eradicate them.

The meeting was attended by Union Health and Family Welfare Minister J.P. Nadda, Union Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi, NITI Aayog Vice Chairperson Rajiv Kumar, Secretaries of Health, WCD and Ayush.

Also present were representatives of stakeholder Ministries such as Drinking Water and Sanitation, Food and Public Distribution and representatives of Chattisgarh, Tamil Nadu and Bihar among others.

‘Anemia Mukt Bharat’ aims at strengthening the mechanism to tackle anemia. A nationwide Intensified diarrhoea Control Fortnight is being implemented every year to control childhood diarrhoea, according to the Health Ministry.

“Over six crore children were covered during IDCF 2018 with 75 per cent coverage,” Nadda said.

“Childhood under-nutrition is a serious public health problem which undermines the survival, growth, development of children and diminishes the strength and capacity of the nation,” Nadda said.

“India is committed to achieving global nutrition targets by 2025 as set by member-nations in World Health Assembly in 2012. We are on track to achieve the targets for exclusive breastfeeding,” the Health Minister said.

The WCD minister said that the target under the Poshan Abhiyaan is to move faster in achieving a malnutrition-free India. “The focus should also be on supply of sufficient nutritious food that should be fed to the children and other beneficiaries of the mission,” he said.

According to the health ministry, under the Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK) and Rashtriya Kishore Swasthya Karyakram (RKSK), systematic efforts are undertaken to detect nutrition-deficiency among children and adolescents.


Food security does not equal good nutrition

A study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization confirms that poor-quality diet poses a greater threat to public health across the world than malaria, tuberculosis or measles


One is what one eats. A study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization confirms that poor-quality diet poses a greater threat to public health across the world than malaria, tuberculosis or measles and that diet-related factors account for six of the top nine ailments on the global burden of disease. This is worrying for India is home to no less than 196 million people with chronic undernourishment. Yet, it is a food secure nation; efforts at improving access to food and nutrition are led by the National Food Security Act, not to mention the special nutritional schemes for women and children like mid-day meals. Why then are India’s masses undernourished? The first hurdle — as with everything else — is corruption. The porous nature of the public distribution system ensures that actual beneficiaries end up getting only part of the allotted quantity of provisions. Even what is distributed is of an inferior quality. Then, measures to check such discrepancies end up reinforcing exclusion. Take, for instance, the Aadhaar scheme; thousands have been deprived of basic necessities because they do not have a unique identity card, often because of bureaucratic and technological failures. Another obstacle is wastage — 61,824 tonnes of foodgrains were reportedly damaged between 2011 and 2017, enough to feed around eight lakh people for an entire year. There is also the thoughtless imposition of majoritarian beliefs like keeping eggs out of mid-day meals.

The problem of undernutrition, however, goes deeper. In India, food security — largely owing to the push of the Green Revolution — is imagined in terms of rice and wheat. This has changed consumption patterns. Coarse grains — historically seen as food of the underprivileged — have disappeared from the plates and the fields. Low prices have not helped their cause either. Yet, coarse grains are packed with nutrition, containing high levels of iron, calcium and even protein. These are also water efficient and climate resilient. Introducing coarse grains into the PDS can go a long way towards tackling problems like anaemia, which affects more than half of all women and children under the age of five in India. This will require time and a comprehensive approach, including a rethinking of agricultural policies. The traditional attitude to food security has been to promote staples like grains, tubers and other starchy food, contributing to the twin burden of malnutrition — undernourishment and obesity. The focus must now shift to improving the nutritional value of meals.


‘Incompatible With Life’, TB Patients Struggle with Modi Government’s Policy on Nutrition

'Incompatible With Life', TB Patients Struggle with Modi Government's Policy on Nutrition

‘Incompatible with life’. That’s a death sentence, backed by medical science and given by doctors to thousands of Tuberculosis patients around India.

And 25-year-old Rani, a tribal woman who is a Tuberculosis patient at the Jan Swasthya Sahyog hospital in Chhattisgarh, is tottering on the brink of this sentence.

When Rani arrived at this hospital three months ago, she had a body mass index (BMI) of nine. Any BMI less than 13 is medically classified as ‘incompatible with life’.

Rani is an adult woman but could easily be mistaken for a child. TB has devastated her body, and she is all bones. “I’m getting hiccups,” she said faintly, and her mother had to help her drink water.

The approach to tackling TB the world over has been bacteriological: medical science and public policy have focused on the TB bacteria – Mycobacterium tuberculosis – as being the cause for TB. Strictly speaking, it is the cause for TB. Yet the bacteria itself remains present, latently, in thousands of people, especially in TB-heavy countries like India. But TB doesn’t manifest in all people who carry the bacteria. How does this happen?

This is because the mere presence of the bacteria may not itself trigger TB. But the bacteria accompanied by other bad influences, ‘risk factors’ and ‘co-morbidities’ can flare the latent bacteria to manifest itself as TB.

Rani, a TB patient whose body mass index has fallen to levels considered ‘incompatible with life’. Credit: Anoo Bhuyan

Rani in Chhattisgarh has the odds stacked against her, and she is one of India’s thousands of TB patients. According to the Global TB Report 2017, India saw 28 lakh new TB cases and 4.2 lakh deaths of patients with TB.

But the ‘germ theory’ approach to TB has meant that medical science and government intervention do not focus on links such as the “jugalbandi between undernutrition and TB,” says Dr Yogesh Jain at the JSS hospital.

The global goal to eliminate TB has been set at 2030. The Modi government has committed to achieving this by 2025. India has the highest number of TB cases in the world.

“Unacceptably high” health statistics in tribal areas

According to Tribal Health in India, a government of India report submitted in 2017, malnutrition in tribal areas is a “paradox.” Malnutrition, which is considered as stunting in children and low body mass index in adults, is “unacceptably high” and is far more than among non-tribal populations.

The status of pulmonary TB in tribal areas is also significantly higher than the rest of the country: tribal areas see 703 cases as against 256 per one lakh.

The likes of Rani, living in tribal parts of Chhattisgarh, are living these statistics out themselves.

Also read: Debate: India’s TB Patients Need Bedaquiline Now, Never Mind the Critics

But yet policy makers in India do not act upon these linkages.

“Undernutrition is the most widely prevalent risk factor for TB in the Indian population, and it is also the most widely prevalent comorbidity in patients with TB in India. But this is a correctable and modifiable risk factor,” says Dr Anurag Bhargava, a TB researcher and currently a professor at Yenepoya Medical College.

Jain agrees: “While there is a lot of talk of drug resistance in TB, in these depressed parts of the country, this is not the most important issue. The biggest issue we see with our TB patients is, actually, undernutrition.”

Radical shift in TB control

India started recognising the nutritional support aspect of TB control in 2017. The National Strategic Plan for Tuberculosis currently has a budget of Rs 5527 crore for India’s projected nine million TB patients. Of this, Rs 1,200 crore is for nutritional and social support for patients.

Nutritional support means a ‘sustenance’ of Rs 500 per month (USD 8) during the treatment of TB via a direct benefit transfer to the patients.

But the government is still only looking at nutritional support to help TB patients strengthen themselves during ‘treatment’ of TB. Doctors like Bhargava and Jain are saying that the government should be looking at fixing India’s nutrition problem to ‘prevent’ TB and not just treat it.

This would be a radical shift in India’s approach to TB control.

India also contributes the largest burden of TB patients globally.

India struggles with keeping its people nourished. According to the latest Global Hunger Index, India ranks 100 out of 119 countries. In Asia, only Pakistan and Afghanistan rank lower than India. India contributes a third to the global burden of undernutrition. India also contributes the largest burden of TB patients globally.

It is not that the Indian government does not know this. In the national TB plan, the union health ministry explains that these links are “bidirectional”: “Under-nutrition is a risk factor for tuberculosis which in turn worsens the nutritional status, generating a vicious cycle which can lead to adverse outcomes (during and following therapy) for patients with active tuberculosis including those with multi-drug resistant TB. This interaction is particularly important in the Indian context where food insecurity and under-nutrition coexist with a large burden of tuberculosis.”

As a solution, the government has announced a support scheme of Rs 500 per patient per month to help them buy better food and nutrition. Patients receive the money through bank transfer, and they would all need to be linked by Aadhaar to the government’s transfer system, ‘Nikshay’.

‘Direct benefit transfer’ hinders treatment

“The feedback we have from the ground is that the DBT scheme has numerous challenges. First, access is an issue, there is little awareness. Moreover, the amount is too little and many patients think it’s pointless to apply,” says Chapal Mehra, a volunteer with Survivors for TB.

Mehra says that despite the government clarifying on Aadhaar cards not being necessary for treatment, there is still confusion among health workers and patients on the ground.

A TB patient at the JSS hospital in Chhattisgarh who says he doesn’t know his bank details to access the government’s cash transfer. Credit: Anoo Bhuyan

For Rani in Chhattisgarh, accessing nutrition through the government’s plan is not an option. She is so weak that she cannot sit up in bed. She is hypothermic, covered with blankets and a heater on next to her. She is connected to a giant oxygen cylinder. She has been vomiting all day. Her husband has abandoned her because she “cannot work anymore.” She asks her mother to help her sit up to drink water, then immediately says, “Hold me, I’m going to fall.”

For Rani to access the government’s ‘nutritional support’, she would have to go to give her biometrics at a government centre, wait for the Aadhaar card to be delivered to her address, then withdraw the monthly money and then go and buy her ration herself.

Another TB patient at the hospital is sipping water with his wife wearing a mask beside him. “Have you eaten today?” his doctor asks him. He and his wife are both agricultural labourers and they say they don’t know about the government’s plan to give Rs 500 to TB patients. “Rs 500 is not going to help us. For my treatment, we have to pay for food, transport, accommodation. A bus ticket itself costs Rs 90. I don’t remember my bank account number either.”


PepsiCo Continues Health Kick, Reveals First Startups For Its Accelerator Program

PepsiCo picked health-and-wellness-focused brands for its first U.S. Nutrition Greenhouse.Credit: PepsiCo

PepsiCo announced last week that it will acquire U.K.-based snack maker Pipers Crisps, the latest in a series of acquisitions that are a key part of the company’s growth strategy. The brand makes familiar crisps, but its newest products, Pipers Crispeas, are high-protein, high-fiber, pea-based snacks that play in the better-for-you space.

It’s a space where PepsiCo is becoming increasingly at home.

The company that used to be known for its sugary sodas and salty snacks is rapidly growing its investment in plant-based products and other food and beverage brands that are focused on health, wellness and sustainability.

Last month, PepsiCo acquired Health Warrior, a maker of plant-based protein bars, powders and other snacks, for an undisclosed amount. Earlier this year, the company paid $3.2 billion for carbonated beverage machine maker SodaStream, betting that demand for unsweetened bubbly water drinks would continue to climb.

“We continue to position ourselves at the forefront of changing consumer preferences and trends,” PepsiCo North America CEO Al Carey said when the company announced its acquisition of Health Warrior.

The most recent acquisitions in the healthy snacking and better-for-you beverage arena have been established brands with significant sales and distribution. But PepsiCo’s also looking ahead with its Nutrition Greenhouse project.


On Monday, the company released the list of the first 10 startups for the first round of the program in the U.S.

The companies receive $20,000 from PepsiCo at the start of the program, along with mentorship and support to help them achieve specific, growth-oriented goals. At the end of six months, the company that has come the furthest will receive an additional $100,000.

PepsiCo is looking to ventures that resonate with changing consumer tastes, said Daniel Grubbs, managing director of PepsiCo Ventures Group and project lead for the Nutrition Greenhouse program.

“The Greenhouse companies are a reflection of where the consumer is,” he said.

Mentorship and advice will come from executives in PepsiCo’s established brands including Quaker Oats, Naked Juice and KeVita, a kombucha brand it acquired two years ago.

The roster of 10 companies selected for the Nutrition Greenhouse includes Remedy Organics, a plant-based functional beverage maker that began with a food-as-medicine strategy, said Cindy Kasindorf, who founded the brand with her husband, serial entrepreneur Henry Kasindorf.

Remedy Organics’ beverages are made with superfoods and fresh ingredients like hemp seeds, turmeric and spirulina, which are listed on the front of the clear bottles.

Cindy, a nutritional health counselor, dreamed up the idea for the company after she introduced her clients to plant-based beverages and other natural remedies and saw that they were helping, she said.

The venture began in her home kitchen, where she made enough to sell at the local bagel shop. Her story and her passion sold the products, she said, and today the drinks are sold at more than 1,000 stores in the New York metro area including Wegmans, Whole Foods Market and Shop Rite.

The husband-and-wife team sought expert advice from the beginning and the Nutrition Greenhouse will allow them to do that on a larger scale as they expand nationally and develop new product lines.

“We’re using this a vessel for our mission to bring better food to the world through mainstream channels,” Cindy said.

Rule Breaker Snacks, another Greenhouse company, has already overcome some significant hurdles to growth, starting with its name.

Nancy Kalish started the venture to devise healthier versions of the treats that daily tempted her sweet tooth. Kalish named the startup Pure Genius and started promoting her chickpea-based brownies and other baked goods at trade shows, only to find out the name she hoped to trademark was already taken.

Kalish cried a tear or two, then came up with Rule Breaker.

“It hit me that we really are rule breakers, we’re disrupting the snack industry,” she said.

A tougher challenge cropped up when the brand tried to expand into more retail outlets. It already had a distribution deal with Whole Foods Market, which had helped the brand get set up to deliver the product to the store frozen, where it was defrosted with a shelf life of three weeks. Other retailers needed the product to stay fresh for much longer, so it was back to the drawing board, this time with food scientists.

About a year ago, the team started from scratch and reformulated the recipes to create a product that’s shelf-stable for a year, she said.

“I honestly think that opened the door to a lot of bigger retailers who didn’t want to touch us with a 10-foot pole before,” she said. “Without that I don’t think I would have been in a position to apply for the Nutrition Greenhouse.”

Now the products are in Wegmans and Kroger stores and available via Amazon, and Rule Breakers faces new challenges.

“Now big retailers do want us and we need some help with that,” she said.

Her team is dedicated and working seven days a week, she said, but it’s a small group and there’s no time left for big-picture planning and strategizing for not only keeping up with existing demand but also driving growth. That’s where PepsiCo’s program comes in.

“I want to learn about e-commerce and customer acquisition and scaling up so that we don’t overextend ourselves,” she said.

Kalish met with her mentor for the first time last week and, in addition to the welcome advice on offer, she enjoyed her first chance in years to take a break from putting out fires and just talk about her business and feel nurtured by someone who was there to listen and help.

Plant-based seafood company Sophie’s Kitchen began with a passion for solving the global problem of overfishing and the looming challenge of feeding the more than 9 billion people expected to inhabit the planet by 2050, said founder Eugene Wang.

“A lot of the Asian countries consume a lot of seafood and I think I’m possible the best ambassador to help the world correct the problem [of overfishing,]” he said.

Wang’s family has been making vegetarian food for half a century, often using the Asian root vegetable called konjac that’s the base of the shrimp, crab and other vegan seafood dishes sold under the Sophie’s Kitchen brand.

“Demand for anything plant-based, especially seafood, is growing around the world,” he said.

Now that the eight-year-old company’s products are in grocery stores around the country, Wang has a new goal he hopes to get help with during the PepsiCo program – foodservice.

“Shrimp alone is an over $1 billion market in U.S. foodservice, not to mention the global market, so a lot of foodservice operators are talking to us,” he said.

The group of applicants for the Greenhouse was bigger and more diverse than PepsiCo expected and the 10 selected reflect that, Grubbs said.

“The common thread among the companies is that they’re all really passionate and focused in terms of their personal missions, they’re clean ingredients focused and putting new spins on the category,” he said.


Students ‘Cooking Up Change’ in spite of lax nutrition requirements

Cooking Up Change

Cooking Up Change participants are challenged to create a new school lunch option for Chicago Public Schools and are judged by a panel of professional chefs. | Provided by Healthy Schools Campaign

If Chicago Public School students participating in the Cooking Up Change competition do well on Wednesday, they won’t be traveling to Washington D.C. for a final culinary contest.

That’s partly due to the Trump Administration’s rollback of nutritional requirements in school lunches.

States are no longer required to meet the same standards for whole grains, lower sodium and low-fat flavored milks offered in school lunch programs that were initiated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture during former President Barack Obama’s tenure.

Since 2011, Cooking Up Change contest finalists from around the country would go to the nation’s capitol to face off against their peers and meet their local legislators to talk about the importance of healthy options in schools.

But the Trump Administration has lack of appetite for a discussion around school lunch nutrition, organizers say.

This year, however, there will be a designated day in the spring for the Cooking Up Change winning dishes to be served across the country as a statement to advocate for healthy school meals, said Sara Porter, vice president of external affairs for Healthy Schools Campaign, the non-profit that runs the competition.

Porter said requirements have also been loosened this year to allow more schools to participate in the contest.

Chicago Cooking Up Change participants are enrolled Chicago Public Schools Career and Technical Education Culinary program. | Provided by Healthy Schools Campaign

In Chicago, student competitors are enrolled in CPS’ Career and Technical Education Culinary program and winners will have their meals served at all CPS schools.

For Wednesday’s competition at the Bridgeport Art Center, teams from seven different schools will prepare lunch options using the same ingredients and equipment.

Teams must adhere to nutrition rules –– no added salt or sugar –– and to a budget of $1.40 per plate. A panel of judges will be selecting the winners.

There is also a breakfast category in this year’s competition, requiring students to whip up a main dish that can be eaten without utensils with a fruit and a vegetable side dish. The winners for the breakfast contest will be decided by guests at Wednesday’s event.

The winning team members will receive $1,000 scholarships to the Washburne Culinary and Hospitality Institute at Kennedy-King College.

Julissa Villegas, a 17-year-old senior at Benito Juarez High School, said her team has come up with a new version of chicken and waffles that trades in the waffle for French toast and spices up both the chicken and maple syrup dipping sauce with cayenne pepper.

“In the world, there is a lot of obesity,” Villegas said. “We want to have a healthy meal in school but that is also delicious and tastes good.”

Nyah Griffin, who was on the first winning team from Chicago Vocational Career Academy in 2007, is returning as a judge and chef mentor.

“It’s more so about being passionate about the food,” said Griffin, manager of food service at Mercy Home for Boys and Girls. “The competition can be hectic and it’s stressful, but if it’s about the food at the end of the day, everything else will fall into place.”

John Colletta, executive chef and managing partner of Quartino Ristorante and Wine Bar, is judging for the first time on Wednesday.

“It’s actually remarkable to see the things they’ve [students] come up with their limited background and limited exposure,” Colletta said.


Nutrition Programmes, Education May Help Lower Anaemia In India

Nutrition Programmes, Education May Help Lower Anaemia In India

According to a study published in the BMJ Global Health Journal, improved public health and nutrition programmes for children under five years of age, and higher education and wealth among expectant mothers substantially contributed to lowering anaemia among these two groups between the years 2006 and 2016. As per the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Anaemia reduction among teenage girls and women under 50 years of age, however, showed minimal progress. More than half of the population of women and children in India is anaemic and is, therefore, currently experiencing reduced quality of life in various respects, which includes work capacity, fatigue, cognitive function, birth outcomes and child development.

According to the researchers, in addition to describing the problem, showing slow improvements, and showing high variability between different states, their paper identifies drivers of anaemia from a broad set of potential drivers at various levels. Among various drivers, positive changes in mothers’ education, coverage of nutrition and health interventions, socioeconomic status, sanitation and meat and fish consumption contributed to improvement in the haemoglobin count – low haemoglobin count indicates anaemia – among both children and pregnant women during 2006-16.

Better education alone accounted for nearly one-fourth of the improvement seen in the haemoglobin count among expectant mothers, and one-tenth in children. The researchers said that further improvements in these common drivers can substantially impact maternal and child anaemia, simultaneously bringing down anaemia prevalence across the country in these two groups.

Haemoglobin and anaemia improved significantly among children less than five years; and pregnant women 15-49 years old, but not in the non-pregnant women in the same age group between 2006 and 2016. Anaemia declined by 11 percentage points among children (70 per cent in 2006 to 59 per cent in 2016), 7.6 percentage points among expectant mothers (58 per cent to 50.4 per cent), and a mere 2.1 percentage points in teenage girls and women under 50 (55 per cent to 52.9 per cent).

The researchers claimed that no progress has been made in reducing anaemia among non-pregnant adult women in India in the last decade. Most programmes have not focused on this group but, instead, have focused on pregnant women and young children.

India’s recently launched Anaemia Mukt Bharat initiative puts the focus on women of reproductive age (20-49 years), who will start receiving weekly iron-folic acid supplementation, which supports the finding on the need to attend to this population segment. In addition, the Centre has mandated the fortification of salt with iodine and iron, and wheat flour with iron, folic acid and Vitamin B-12.