How to promote the Mediterranean Diet in schools
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The Cervantes Institute of Madrid has recently hosted the presentation of the conclusions of the forum "How to promote the Mediterranean Diet in schools", in which the need to change the habits of the population to improve health has been defended, promoting the values of the Mediterranean Diet from an early age.

The conclusions have been presented by the president of the Mediterranean Diet Foundation, Francisco Martínez Arroyo; MAPA's Deputy Director General for Food Promotion in Spain, Purificación González; the general director of the Carlos III National Center for Cardiovascular Research (CNIC) in Madrid and director of the Cardiovascular Institute and “Physician-in-Chief” of the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, Valentín Fuster; and the scientific coordinator of the 40th Parallel-Mediterranean Diet Observatory and member of the Internal Medicine Service of the Hospital Clinic-University of Barcelona, Ramón Estruch.

During the study and realization of the Pyramid of the Mediterranean Children's and Youth Diet, professionals in the habits of children and young people, have exposed the need to focus the issue of food not only in the family but also in the school environment. Currently, more than 70% of children eat at noon in the school cafeteria, playing a very important educational role.

Faced with this situation, a debate forum has been organized on how to promote the Mediterranean Diet in schools, since it is one of the healthiest eating patterns, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), demonstrating with the maximum level of scientific evidence its effectiveness in the prevention of most chronic diseases, including obesity, cardiovascular diseases and various types of cancer.

Among the main conclusions of the forum, organized by the Mediterranean Diet Foundation and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA) , it highlights the importance of knowing the body, following an adequate diet, exercising and controlling emotions. For this reason, motivation and education from emotion is essential, in this way, the acquisition of healthy habits will be carried out automatically, since children and adolescents spend a third of the day in the school environment. Emotional and motivational education is a job for schools, but also for families and society as a whole.

It also highlights that the main objective of educational centers should be to guarantee food safety, ensure quality food (nutritional and organoleptic) and accessible to the entire child and youth population, framing itself in the values ​​of the Mediterranean Diet.

Likewise, it points out that programs to promote healthy habits should be more transversal with the involvement of all “actors”, including administrations, schools, colleges and companies. The Mediterranean Diet and its lifestyle should be understood as an important part of the public policies developed by the administrations.

Finally, it considers that the educational plan for the child and youth population should include an education program that emphasizes the family environment, not only in food but in other aspects such as sustainability or food waste.



Source: Mercacei


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