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In a Nutshell (2012) Food-Nutrition-The Vulnerable

In a Nutshell (2012) Food-Nutrition-The Vulnerable

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This In a Nutshell focuses on key aspects of the food and nutrition security challenge, including current and emerging threats that can plunge large pockets of Caribbean nationals into a state of food insecurity and as well, the plight of the vulnerable. It seeks to create awareness of the fact that taking action to secure food and nutrition, especially feeding the vulnerable, is everybody's problem and responsibility.
This In a Nutshell focuses on key aspects of the food and nutrition security challenge, including current and emerging threats that can plunge large pockets of Caribbean nationals into a state of food insecurity and as well, the plight of the vulnerable. It seeks to create awareness of the fact that taking action to secure food and nutrition, especially feeding the vulnerable, is everybody's problem and responsibility.

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04/27/2014

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‘How is it possible that in the 21st century, hunger continuesto be the number one risk to health worldwide? Not cancer;Not heart disease; Not even AIDS. Hunger!’
(James T. Morris, The Economic Impact of Hunger, Indianapolis Economic Club, 9 February 2004)
The apparent economic progress measured by the presenceof several foreign fast food chains and food serviceestablishments hide the real truth: that food insecurity andhunger are a very real problem for many people in manyparts of the Caribbean. This is a tragedy especially giventhe high level of food wastage in both humid city marketsand air-conditioned supermarkets; of half-eaten servings inhotels and restaurants, dumped because ‘over-catered left-overs’ are not allowed to leave the premises; of seeminglynutritious boxed school lunches discarded becauseCaribbean children have taken a taste for fast foods of thefried kinds.Hunger is a very familiar word. And familiarity does breedcontempt, sometimes obvious, but more often veiled, associety looks down on the vulnerable who beg, scrape, or doworse, in an attempt to stave off hunger. Familiarity can actas an incentive to not act, i.e., to ignore the problem or adopta view that it is a Government problem. Bob Marley warnedthat ‘a hungry man is an angry man!’ In Caribbean societies,hunger is driving people to do desperate acts.In a Nutshell seeks to sensitise, raise awareness, provideinsights and inform on issues and topics of importance tosustainable agriculture and food and nutrition security inthe Caribbean. Hunger and food insecurity are an importantissue!
 
 
In a Nutshell 
 
What is Food and Nutrition Security (FNS)?
The concept of food and nutrition security is made up of two distinct, yet inseparable parts that individually, havefuelled debates over decades.
food security
is when there is enough food physically available over time, for a particular household,community, country and/or region to meet their daily needs.Debate continues as to whether FNS should mean that a country should produce most of its own food, or focuson increasing wealth to purchase food from others (imports). Some leading experts have advised (developing)countries to concentrate their resources and efforts in areas that offer the greatest return to investment, wealthcreation and economic growth. This is usually veiled advice to ‘get out of agriculture and food production’. This isalso based on the premise that developed countries are ‘better at it’ and can supply foods at lower prices!
nutrition security
is when individuals in households, communities, countries and/or regions use food,through consumption, as raw materials for growth, fuel for energy and vitamins and minerals that keep thebody healthy and functioning properly.The nutrition debate has been re-ignited as the negative impacts of ‘poor nutrition’, due to poor diets, are becomingclearer and more costly in terms of wide-ranging illnesses, rising health care costs and ultimately death! Moreworrisome is that such nutrition-related illnesses are affecting a significant number of children and young adults.Because of this, a number of foods are being closely scrutinised for links between their over-consumption andill-health.Taken separately, these debates need to resolved and addressed. A first essential step is to keep the two individualparts of the concept firmly connected. It should become clear that food security and nutrition security are not thesame; that they are two sides of one coin, and that they cannot exist or be treated in isolation of each other.
Food is an important and major, but not only source of nutrition.But not all foods provide the nutrients that the body needs for good health.Understanding Food and Nutrition security is to understand that an individual must choose, amongthe increasingly diverse range of available foods within their means, those that are ‘nutrient dense’, inorder to keep the body healthy. Simply put, individuals must ‘fuel-up’ on a mix of foods that have thegreatest nutritional value and not ‘fill-up’ on ‘empty calorie’ foods. Empty calories are foods, though veryattractive, tasty and filling, contain little or no nutritional value, often called ‘Junk food’. Too much of their consumption is detrimental to good health.

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