Elementary and high schools all over the country will be celebrating the National Nutrition Month or “Buwan ng Nutrisyon” this July. According to the National Nutrition Council (NNC), the theme for this year’s celebration is “First 1000 days ni baby pahalagahan para sa malusog na kinabukasan” (Nurture your baby’s first 1000 days for a healthy future).
In a statement, NNC explained that the theme aims to highlight the significance of the first 1000 days of life, which roughly covers a child’s first three years. “The first 1000 days has been called the ‘golden window of opportunity’ for a comprehensive package of nutrition and related interventions to achieve significant changes in reduction in child stunting, underweight and wasting, at the same time contribute to complete child development,” the council said.
The chosen theme is based on the winning entry of Desiree P. Reyes of Los Baños, Laguna. This year’s nutrition month has two main objectives:
1) To create awareness on the importance of proper infant and young child feeding practices, particularly exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months and giving appropriate complementary food after six months while continuing breastfeeding.
2) To promote collaboration among various stakeholders both at the national and local levels for programs serving families with pregnant mothers and children less than two years old.
The national nutrition month is celebrated every July as stipulated in Presidential Decree 491, which also mandated the creation of NNC in 1974. It must be noted that during that time, then-President Ferdinand Marcos had both executive and legislative powers.
The Department of Education is expected to release a memorandum sometime this June outlining suggested activities to be organized by schools in connection to the Nutrition Month celebration.