Nutrition: Key indicator for Development


For a developing country like India, talking about development is an everyday task for us. Elders sit in a teastall and debate about politics and country’s development. But, the definition of development for one person maybe different from the other.So, for a developing country like India what will be the indication of being developed. A wise ma once said that if the system or government is unable to feed its citizen with basic nutritional ammenities, it cannot be a developed country.

“Nutrition” of Social Studies

The word “nutrition” here does not mean measurement of proper nutrition in the food. Here, it means the proper management of the nutritional resources available. In more simpler words, there should be a balance between the supply and demand of grains, cereals, flour, vegetables, fruits, staples and other commodities. This is what indicates how well a country is developed. Are all the citizens getting the basic necessities of life?

This demand and supply chain is called market. What we purchase from a shop is also a part of market and the one who produces them is also a part of this. From the one who test its quality to the one who consumes it, everyone is a part of this chain. The duty of the government is to strengthen this chain and make laws to prevent mishaps in the market.

The market of nutrition

The nutritional goods are produced on the fields by farmers in the primary phase. After harvesting the crop, they sell it to the traders and NFSI (National Food Security of India) silos. Whole sale traders purchase and sell in large quanity and cheap cost to the small shops, venders, and sometimes directly to consumers (like Metro, Big Bazaar, Jiomart, etc). And finally, a consumer is able to purchase it as per his choice.

The chain looks very simple. But, a lot of illegal actions are being conducted by the sellers who are in the system. This makes the system weak and unreliable. The other main purpose of this market is to provide all the consumers with basic nutritional requirement. This means that there should not be scarcity of food for any one, if the chain is developed. But still, in India there are many who do not get access to nutritional food because of certain reasons as discussed below:

  1. The cost of the commodities are too high for the poor people to afford it.
  2. The food is adulterated.
  3. People staock the food in their godowns and release when there is shortage, at high rate.
  4. Consumers are not well educated about their rights.
  5. Social discrimination prevails in the rural areas.
  6. High tax increases the cost of the commodity.

Due to the above reasons, some percentage of children and pregnant women get affected by malnutrition. This is the reason for complicated medical diseases and big hospital bills. Sometimes after all this, the person also could not make it resulting in death. Hence, proper nutrition is the right of all citizens and it is the success of any government if they provide nutritional food to all.

Nutrition for all

We discussed about nutrition from a country’s perspective. Now, let us try to think from an individual’s perspective. The first 18 years of an individual’s life is the most important period in life. Here, they need nutrition the most because they have a lot of task to do. For mental, physical and biological development nutrition has to be adequately provided in edible form. If they lack of any nutrition or take over dose of it, this will affect their mental or physical or biological development. This will result in regular illness and less concentration while learning.

This is not a small problem. He will not be able to learn some fundamental things which will impact on his career later. If an illness is not treated well, then it might turn into a physical/ mental/ biological disorder. One day, parents will depend on their heirs. It becomes the responsibility of parents to grow the individual into the responsible heir on which they can depend in rest of their lives. So, they have to feed their children with nutritional food. As per the citizen it is also our duty to help others feed nutritional food to their children, if they cannot afford.

Government also runs various schemes like Mid Day Meal Scheme which provide free nutritional meals in schools to the children. This also promotes them to get educated and have good nutritional food for free. I think more and more schemes like such must come and remove all social disparity in nutritional food. Please also read the dedication of authority towards midday meal scheme in Chhattisgarh by clicking the link below:

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