24 September 2021, Ludhiana: The Ludhiana Chapter of NAAS in association with the Punjab Agricultural University organized an online lecture on, ‘Newtrition – Way to Go’ by Ms Ritu Sudhakar, Chief Dietician, Dayanand Medical College & Hospital, Ludhiana. This was the third programme by the Ludhiana Chapter of NAAS and PAU to mark the first week of September as the National Nutrition Week, the other two previously conducted for public and school going kids through PAU’s Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) at Ropar and Bathinda on September 6 and 7, 2021, respectively.
Ms Sudhakar dwelled on the importance of diet in building the immune system, especially in the wake of Covid 19 pandemic. She elaborated about the gut brain axis and the reciprocal relationship between the two in shaping physical, mental and emotional health. “Since 80% of our immune system lies in our gut, what we eat and how it is absorbed is of critical importance”, she remarked. Ms Sudhakar briefed about the changing trend of the nutrition pyramid with more importance now being given to healthy fats, proteins, nuts and whole grains compared to the past. She emphasized on nutrition, exercise, sleep and mindfulness as the building blocks for immunity. Laying special emphasis on dangers of Trans fats, Ms Sudhakar stressed on consumption of complex carbohydrates over simple ones like refined sugar, cakes and bakery products. For Indian cooking she recommended oils like canola, rice bran and mustard as they have a high smoke point. “Olive oil though good for health should be consumed cold and thus it’s not suitable for Indian cooking”, the dietician emphasized. She also warned about staying clear of magic foods or super foods that lead to a crash after initial surge of energy. On intermittent fasting, “while it is recommended for weight loss, one must remember that the body needs slow and constant absorption of nutrients through out the day”, mentioned Ms Sudhakar. She advised a flexitarian diet over vegetarian or veganism.
Dr G.K. Sangha, former Dean Postgraduate Studies, in her remarks applauded the speaker for giving a detailed talk on the nutritional aspect of wellness in modern times. Earlier Dr Kiran Bains Head Department of Food and Nutrition, PAU extended cordial welcome to former PAU Vice Chancellor and Padam Shri awardee, Dr B.S. Dhillon (convenor, Ludhiana chapter of NAAS), Deans, Directors of PAU and GADVASU, faculty and students. The session was wrapped up with a vote of thanks by Dr Sandeep Bains, Dean, College of Community Science, PAU.
Dr P.K. Chhuneja, Coordinator, NAAS, Regional chapter coordinated the event and briefed about the activities of NAAS.