BY: JOANNE NAMNAMA G. PARROCHA
SAN FERNANDO CITY – Nutritionists said food fortification is the way to battle malnutrition and mineral deficiencies among Filipinos.
Susana Encarnacion of the Food and Nutrition Reasearch Institute said food fortification is adding micronutrients to foods widely consumed by the population such as rice, noodles and cooking oil.
“Food fortification is an effective strategy in fighting malnutrition. We need to increase public awareness on the benefits of fortified foods,” Encarnacion said.
The Department of Science and Technology through the FNRI recently convened advocates of health and nutrition in Ilocos in a media forum here.
Acting director Armando Ganal, of DOST in the Ilocos, urged participants to perform their roles of disseminating important information to reach different stakeholders in the region.
“Media play a vital role in informing the public on facts and updates relating to societal issues including health and nutrition,” said Ganal.
Experts from the FNRI said most Filipinos are deficient in iron, iodine and Vitamin A.
Participants also reorganized the Nutrition Communication (NUTRICOMNET), a network of provincial and regional media practitioners and information officers of agencies and institutions involved in food, nutrition and health promotion.
The network will help achieve the Millennium Development Goal in eradicating extreme poverty and hunger by 2015. (MCA/JNP/PIA-1 La Union)