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Eat Well, Be Well

 

Hello Friends!

It’s National Nutrition & Obesity Week here in SA, and I’m really privileged to add my voice to the conversation. Did you know that one of the simplest, most budget-friendly and fuss-free ways to add more goodness to our everyday lives and help fight diseases such as Covid-19 is by eating more plants, like in this recipe for beautiful, fragrant Roasted Tandoori Cauliflower Flatbreads? Yip!

And in the mean time, here’s a little more about what ‘Good Nutrition, Good Immunity’ 
CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa (HSFSA), Professor Pamela Naidoo says, “As a country, we have one of the highest rates of overweight and obesity in the world, a major contributor to cardiovascular disease, which is now known as a serious co-morbidity when it comes to COVID-19. Making poor food choices every day and maintaining an unhealthy weight greatly increases the risks of disease and death. On the other hand, focusing on consuming fresh vegetables, whole-grains, beans, and lentils daily, as well as regular physical activity, are straightforward ways to achieve healthy weight and protect ourselves and our families.”

Now more than ever, with the world still in the midst of the COVID-19 onslaught, healthy eating habits should be a top priority for all of us. Healthy whole foods that are minimally processed are one of the simplest ways of boosting our immune systems, and within that, eating more plant-based goodness is one of the most accessible, and most cost-effective sources of better nutrition.

So, to support this message and raise awareness around eating more veggies, here are three of my favourite plant-powered speedy weeknight meals from my new plant-based cookbook Super Natural that all give you amazing bang for your buck in terms of flavour, being budget-friendly and really fuss-free.

1. Butternut and Chickpea Korma
2. Spicy Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burgers
3. Golden Sesame Tofu with Rainbow Slaw

To find out more about National Nutrition & Obesity Week and to find more nutritious meals, head you can head on over here.

And while I’m here, here are a few other key food facts to keep in mind if you’re interested…
Food, water, sanitation and social security are under severe pressure at the moment. An estimated 265 million people will face acute hunger by the end of 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19.

Under- and over-nutrition are both forms of malnutrition that compromise immune function and make people more vulnerable to infection, illness and death. Unfortunately, the availability, affordability and preference for highly processed foods in South Africa results in the prevalence of malnutrition and diet-related NCDs. Choosing a diet based on home-cooked whole foods is a solid foundation for good nutrition and good immunity

The food and hunger crisis that is predicted due to COVID-19 is however not new: prior to this global pandemic, malnutrition was the global disaster that was set to threaten 135 million lives by the end of 2020. COVID-19 only exacerbated this persistent problem and highlighted the shortcomings in the global food system.

A survey by Statistics South Africa showed that approximately 4,3 per cent of respondents indicated that they experienced hunger during the month prior to the start of the national lockdown, which increased to 7,0 per cent by the sixth week of the national lockdown period. The NIDS-CRAM Wave 1 survey shows that 47 per cent of the respondents ran out of money to buy food in April and that between May and June 2020, 21 per cent respondents reported that someone in the household went hungry in the last 7 days and 15 percent of respondents reported that a child went hungry in the last 7 days.