Importance of ensuring family health and nutrition amidst the ongoing pandemic

As people across the world, and India in particular adapt to the new definition of normal amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, Almond Board of California, today, hosted a virtual panel discussion featuring personalities from India and USA. The discussion, titled, ‘The importance of ensuring family health and nutrition amidst a pandemic’ focused on the current health situation in the country and highlighted preventive measures families can include within their daily diets and lifestyle.

Leading the discussion was Bollywood actress, Soha Ali Khan, Pilates Expert and Diet & Nutrition Consultant, Madhuri Ruia, Regional Head – Dietetics, Max Healthcare – Delhi, Ritika Samaddar and Emily Fleischmann, VP – Global Marketing Development, Almond Board of California. The panel was moderated by RJ Shezzi from Hyderabad.

Through the discussion, all panelists shared anecdotes from their personal lives and situations, prompting families across India to pay special attention to their lifestyle and dietary intake during the pandemic. Stressing on the importance of eating nutritious meals, exercising and inculcating conscious snacking habits, the panelist’s highlighted small changes that families in India can incorporate into their lifestyle to strengthen immunity, enhance safety and increase overall preparedness.

Speaking during the discussion, popular Bollywood actress Soha Ali Khan said, “While the world continues to work tirelessly to find a cure for Covid-19, as a wife and mother, I feel it’s also my responsibility to undertake adequate preventive measures to ensure my family’s safety and good health. As we learn to adjust to this new sense of normal, the most important thing we can do is pledge to lead a healthier lifestyle inclusive of proper nutrition including immunity strengthening foods. A good way to begin is by adding a handful of almonds to your family’s diet. Almonds are a source of zinc, which plays an important role in growth, development, and the maintenance of immune function.”

Ritika Samaddar, Regional Head – Dietetics, Max Healthcare – Delhi said, “The current pandemic has highlighted more than ever, the need for proper nutrition amongst Indian families. Many Indians suffer from ailments such as blood pressure, cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes and obesity, each of which make one susceptible to Covid-19. Hence, it’s absolutely important for families to revisit their diet and healthcare habits, and adjust to this new normal. Whether you are suffering from one of the aforementioned ailments, or are at risk, be sure to include nuts like almonds, seasonal fruits,  vegetables and probiotics that are nutrient rich and add to the body’s overall health.”

Pilates Expert and Diet & Nutrition Consultant Madhuri Ruia said, “For any person’s well-being it’s important to consume a balanced diet, incorporate regular exercise, ensure adequate sleep and practice self-care. Each of these elements have become pertinent in the current context, when there is a cloud of uncertainty and feelings of fear. As individuals, I feel we should do our best to take care of our family and our well-being and the easiest way to do this by making relevant changes to our lifestyle. Start by adding at least 30 minutes of any exercise every day – a daily walk, squats, Zumba, or aerobics – but be careful to do it while following social distancing norms. Supplement your fitness routine, by practicing mindful snacking and opt for foods like roasted or salted almonds, which have satiating properties and may promote feelings of fullness. Besides being a healthy snack, almonds are a source of copper and folate, which are known to contribute to a normal function of the immune system.”

Emily Fleishman, VP – Global Marketing Development, Almond Board of California said, “As part of our ongoing efforts, and also during this pandemic, the Almond Board of California has been persistently working towards educating consumers on the importance of proper nutrition and the need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We have also invested in years of scientific research to understand almond health benefits across heart health, diabetes and weight management and skin health – which are all relevant to Indian consumers, especially now. Awareness around good food choices, and snacking habits is key to leading a healthy lifestyle, and for us, it’s important to make sure that families across India have access to this information.”

By making these small lifestyle changes, and consistently following them through, families across India can make a healthy difference to their lives, strengthen immunity and also take relevant precautions to keep themselves safe from the ongoing outbreak.

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