WiRED Releases Nutrition Module
Good Nutrition is Critical to Health and Development
By Allison Kozicharow; Edited by Elizabeth Fine
Nutrition is fundamental to good health and well-being.
WiRED International now offers a Nutrition Overview module. This module provides a general introduction to nutrition and discusses the role that nutrients such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals and water play to nourish and sustain a healthy body. The course also presents World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines for maintaining a healthy diet.
Nutrition is the process of taking in foods that the body needs to develop and remain healthy. Good nutrition means following an adequate, well-balanced diet. Also, according to WHO, a robust and diverse food supply is an essential part of the health and nutrition response to COVID-19 as well as to other illnesses.
Poor nutrition can lead to:
- Reduced immunity
- Increased susceptibility to disease, both infectious (e.g., COVID-19) and noncommunicable (e.g., heart disease)
- Impaired physical and mental development (especially in children)
- Disrupted sleep quality
- Reduced productivity
In underserved communities, lack of good nutrition goes hand in hand with poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition. Community health workers (CHWs), with their strong connections to the populations where they work are in a unique and trusted position not only to offer people basic health services and referrals but to influence their daily habits.
For example, in Kisumu, Kenya, WiRED CHW Imelda Anyango reported on the challenges of convincing some patients that nutrition is critical to good health:
One man I came into contact with a while ago was opposed to good nutrition. He said that there is no need for it and that you can just eat any food for survival. Later he asked me for advice about avoiding COVID-19 and strengthening his immunity. I told him about the usual precautions of masking and social distancing, but I was also able to gently suggest diet tips without reminding him of his earlier opinion about nutrition. He went away better informed.
Be better informed! Learn more about nutrition — check out WiRED’s Nutrition Overview module.
It’s unfortunate that during this pandemic, when good diets are especially important to our health, the availability of the most nutritious foods can sometimes be limited. Healthful foods help us fight off disease, maintain our weight and, in general, keep us in top condition to endure the pressures this virus imposes on us.
If you feel that your diet has slipped a bit, or that you simply have decided to up your game to put healthful foods on your table, we suggest that you take a look at this newly completed nutrition module. It’s packed with information you can use every day. You might want to share it with others and offer it in online group meetings and in classrooms. Good nutrition can go a long way to fortify our disease fighting defenses and — along with vaccinations, masking and other tools of prevention — keep us healthy during this pandemic.