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Children and the Food Habits

by Vaman Acharya
(Bengaluru, Karntaka, India)

There was a pin drop silence for sometime in the 3rd standard class room. The students were busy in silent prayer for three minutes, closing their eyes. The Teacher was also participated in the prayer.

Suddenly, one girl from the front bench fell down on the ground. Archana, who sat just besides the girl took care of her. She provided her water to drink. The girl gained consciousness and expressed her thanks to Archana. Both were close friends.

“What happened to you Naina?” The Teacher asked.

“Sir, Just I had mild giddiness. I'm alright now. Please permit me to go home along with Archana.”

‘Yes, you can go home along with Archana.”

The matter was informed to Naina’s parents. They reached home within ten minutes. Naina’s mother was waiting for the daughter’s arrival. She being a doctor examined the condition of her daughter. Everything was normal in her condition.

“Aunty what happened to Naina?” asked Archana.

“Archana, first let me thank you for bringing my daughter Naina home. Yesterday we had lunch in a hotel. She was complaining yesterday night at about 11. She had sensation of omit and uneasiness. When I checked her, there was a slight temperature and stomach disorder. I gave her a tablet. She had a disturbed sleep in the night. I don’t know why she had mild giddiness in the class. It may be due to the consumption of contaminated food consumed previous day in the hotel.

“Aunty Can you tell me what is the meaning of contaminated food?”

“Yes! You have asked a very good question. You should take utmost care when you take food. For instance, if you go to a hotel, you should observe the situation. The workers in the hotel will not clean their hands. Even they don’t use hand gloves. Uncovered coughs and sneezes will spread bacteria. Most cases of food borne diseases occur due to under cooking foods, storing foods at the wrong temperature and poor personal hygiene. Under these conditions the food prepared will become contaminated. Such food is harmful for our health.”

“Aunty, please tell me what are the good food habits.”

“Okay! In order to maintain good health one must know correct food habits. Food must contain protein, carbohydrate, fats, minerals and vitamins. Green vegetables, tomatoes, milk and fruits are also equally important. One should take plenty of water at the end of the food. The dining hall must be clean. Use wooden plank or mat to sit at the time of eating. Plates, cups, spoons etc should be cleaned before eating.”

“Thank you very much aunty.”

Archana asked aunt’s permission to take leave of her. At the time of leaving, she met Naina. Then Naina’s mom asked her driver to drop Archana at her home. Immediately on reaching home, she reported everything to her parents.

“Dad, please let me know before consuming food, any other precautions to be observed?”

“Yes! First offer the food to God with prayer. When you are eating do not talk or read book. Eat slowly. If there is a sensation of sneezing, should lean one’s head to a side and sneeze. Do not waste the food. Eat as much as you can. Better stop with little less than what you can take. Wash the plate and tumbler and keep it in proper place. Self help is the best help. Wash your mouth thoroughly. If some friends come while you are eating, do not forget to invite them,” replied her Dad with a smile.

Archana was too happy to learn a lot of things from her dad,too.


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