During the ‘protein week’, the IDA along with the PFNDAI will hold educational seminars to spread awareness to discuss myths and realities of protein.
New Delhi: While the government continues to run various programmes to meet the nutrition deficiency among the masses, the Indian Dietician Association (IDA) on Tuesday revealed that Indian diet has 50 per cent inadequate protein pattern.
The fact, also supported by the Protein Foods Nutrition Development Association of India (PFNDAI), makes it necessary for people to increase the intake of protein-related food, since vegetarian diets alone would not suffice the protein requirement.
According to well-known nutritional pathologist Dr. B. Sesikeran, the issue is a matter of concern as even pregnant women would not be able to achieve optimal protein intake with vegetarian diets until she adds milk.
“Proteins from different sources complement each other. Even with a ratio of 5:1 cereals and pulses combination, the protein quality in terms of digestibility and bio-availability is only around 65 per cent when compared to milk protein,” said Dr. Sesikeran. He was speaking at the launch of the “Protein Week” from July 24-30, an initiative to raise awareness and educate people about protein.
Experts claimed that protein requirement in the second growth spurt is twice of a toddler’s and the requirement is heightened by almost 20 gm per day in the third trimester compared to an adult woman.
IDA Delhi chapter president Neelanjana Singh said, “Quality-based protein is as important as quality of protein taken. For effective utilisation of protein, it is necessary to also include adequate calories in one’s diet.”
Under the awareness drive during the ‘protein week’, the IDA along with the PFNDAI will hold educational seminars engaging key opinion leaders across the country to spread awareness and discuss myths and realities of protein.
“There is a firm need to bring protein discussions to mainstream. Our vegetarian diets are deficient in protein, both in quantity and quality, so we need to supplement with protein which not only fills the gap but has the quality to ensure our cereal and pulse-based protein quality would be elevated,” said executive director, PFNDAI, Dr. J S Pai.