7th April is celebrated as the World Health Day all over the globe. This initiative by WHO is aimed at promoting awareness, motivating and inspiring everybody to pay adequate attention towards the one thing that matters the most- one's health. This year, the theme for World Health Day is 'Universal health coverage: everyone, everywhere'. Food forms an important constituent of your overall health. Consuming a healthy, balanced diet and steering clear of junk and processed foods are few of the basic tenets most of us know of healthy eating. But if you think that is all you need to do for healthy eating, then you must think again. You would be surprised to know that some of our 'healthiest' foods are laden with adulterants which can pave way for a various disorders. Day in and day out one can read about the growth of pesticides and fertilizers penetrating our vegetables and fruits. The water that we drink is not spared either. The elixir of life is becoming life threatening due to presence of hard chemicals.
Ashwin Bhadri, CEO at Equinox labs and an expert in FSSAI Compliance and Food Safety Management, lists out 5 food safety tips you must ensure to not fall prey to the malicious adulterants. Mr. Bhadri says, "A detailed eye for observing the unwanted ingredients can save you from the later food disorders. "
Also Read: World Health Day: 5 Pillars Of A Healthy Diet To Follow
Here Are 5 basic food safety tips you can ensure on domestic front to steer clear of adulterated and disease inducing foods, according to Mr. Bhadri.
#Food Safety Tip 1: Choose better
Make sure the food you buy has an FSSAI-validated label; which means, there is FSSAI license number, detailed list of ingredients with the amount and the clear mention of expiration date.
This is the first barrier - the first line of defence in ensuring the food is aptly chosen by the consumer, considering the health benefits. Avoid choosing products in loose packaging.
#Food Safety Tip 2: Drink safe water
Use water after properly purifying it. A combination of purification methods like water purifier, heating, etc. can be used to ensure quality. Often we miss out on water quality which is one of the major sources of food contamination.
#Food Safety Tip 3. Be aware
Also Read: World Health Day: 5 Foods To Keep Your Eyes Healthy
#Food Safety Tip 4. Don't let the manufacturers con you
Just because the ingredients seem healthier option, doesn't mean they are. Always look up for the 'claims' made by the food businesses using alternate, 'healthier' choices. For example, several artificial sweeteners use ingredients which do more harm to the body than natural sugars 'assume' to do.
#Food Safety Tip 5. Dig deeper
Often we claim that the product was prepared steaming hot right in front of us. We forget that the ingredients that are used, like frying oil, might be reused that can be harmful to the health. Food colouring mixed while preparing food served to you can be equally harmful. Observe while the local food vendors or the vendors in your cafeteria make something. If it doesn't seem right, healthy, stale or adulterated, then it should be avoided.
As they say, charity begins at home. The number of people afflicted from food-borne diseases in India is staggering. This World Health Day, lets pledge to make better and safer food choices. Observing personal hygiene is also an essential part of food safety. Washing utensils and washing hands before eating food must be a practice in every household.
Here's wishing you all a very Happy Health Day!