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Rashtriya POSHAN Maah 2023: India Drives Focus On Nutritional Understanding

POSHAN Maah 2023 aims at fostering nutritional understanding across India through a theme centred on "Suposhit Bharat, Sakshar Bharat, Sashakt Bharat"

POSHAN Abhiyan (Prime Minister's Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition), launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March 2018, is the government's flagship programme that strives to reduce undernutrition levels among children below six years of age, pregnant women, and lactating mothers.

Also known as National Nutrition Month, POSHAN Abhiyan aims to strengthen efforts to end hunger and malnutrition and improve nutritional outcomes among children, adolescent girls, pregnant women, and lactating mothers by focusing on prenatal care, diet, and optimal breastfeeding.

Malnutrition and Anaemia among women and children are major problems in India. As per the Global Hunger Index 2022 report, the prevalence of undernourished people in the population stands at 16.3 per cent, child stunting is at 35.5 per cent, child wasting is at 19.3 per cent and child mortality rate is 3.3 per cent.

About the status of Anaemia in the country, nearly nearly 52 per cent of pregnant women, 67 per cent of children (6-59 months of age), 59 per cent adolescent girls are anaemic. Mitigating these two life-cycle issues remains the core objective of POSHAN Abhiyaan.

To accelerate its efforts towards improving nutritional rates among women and children, this year the government is focusing on key human life cycle stages-pregnancy, infancy, childhood, and adolescence-with the theme 'Suposhit Bharat, Sakshar Bharat, Sashakt Bharat' (Well-Nourished, Well-Read and Empowered India).

The theme lays emphasis on promoting nutrition sensitisation among the tribal communities of India, breastfeeding practices, addressing the prevalence of Anaemia among women, and promoting the value of nutrition and good health for mother and child through various government initiatives.

Every year, the Ministry of Women and Child Development plans month-long activities and programmes under Poshan Maah, focusing on issues such as anaemia prevention, maternal and infant health, hygiene, and sanitation, among others.

This year, activities related to nutrition awareness will be carried out across the country up to the grass-roots level. There will be awareness drives and sessions held on healthy dietary practices, such as including Millets in the diet, organising Anaemia camps for adolescent girls (14-18 years), sensitising women on hygiene and sanitation, and much more.

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