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1030. Food and Nutrition Education

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1030. Food and Nutrition Education

Nutrition is a global issue. Around 1.9 billion adults are overweight or obese, 2 billion suffer from some form of micronutrient deficiency, 161 million children are stunted, and 795 million people do not have access to the food they need to maintain a healthy life.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), unhealthy diets are one of the biggest causes of these nutritional problems. On the other hand, the causes of unhealthy eating habits are intricately intertwined with multiple factors, such as preferences, beliefs, values, and knowledge at the individual level, cultural practices at the family level, rules and informal systems at the social level, health insurance systems, the food industry, food and agricultural systems, policies, media, and social differentiation norms at the national level.

According to FAO, food education refers to a range of educational strategies to help people improve their eating habits and achieve long-term behavior change at all levels: individual, family, society, and country. Food education is not limited to providing information, but also aims to provide empowerment opportunities that enable the capacity and decision-making necessary for healthy eating habits.

In Japan, June is designated as "Food Education Month" every year (link in Japanese), and the national government, local governments, and related organizations work together to implement a focused and effective food education promotion campaign to further spread food education.

Food and nutrition education is the basis of life, and it is the foundation of intellectual, moral, and physical education. It is necessary to develop human beings who can acquire knowledge about "food" and the ability to choose "food" through various experiences and realize healthy eating habits.


Contributor: IIYAMA Miyuki, Information Program


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