PIA News Service - Tuesday, November 6, 2012


402nd Brigade joins Parish Youth Congress

By 1LT Joe Patrick Martinez

CAGDIANAO, Province of Dinagat Islands, Nov. 6 (PIA) – In celebration of the 6th Vicariate Youth Congress, the 402nd Brigade, Philippine Army has partnered with the Immaculate Concepcion youth ministry and leaders for a 4-day youth congress held recently at St. Peter and St Paul Parish in Poblacion Cagdianao, this province.

With the theme “Kabatan-onan sa Dinagat: Maampingon sa Kinaiyahan ug Masaligon sa Gahum sa Kahitas-an!”, it called on to revitalize one’s faith and conviction towards life.

Around 300 youth leaders from Loreto, Tubajon, Libjo, Basilisa, Dinagat, and Cagdianao graced the event where they prayerfully reflected and shared together concerns, challenges and matters of interest which affected the church, community and the youth in the present time so as to come up with courses of action on how to become more animated and more effective in ministering the youth.

“I feel blessed on this wonderful occasion that God made everything perfect for our youth! God bless the people who believed and supported this activity especially to our Army of Peace. May you always be our partner in molding our youth as God wanted us to be the messenger of peace,” said Most Reverent Antonieto B Cabajog, Bishop of Surigao.

Col Ronald N Albano, 402nd Brigade Commander, Philippine Army, on the other hand, believed that through this convergence with all the stakeholders especially with the church, “we can do greater things with high impact in the lives of our youth. Our advocacy is the same as others advocacy so why do we have to separate our efforts with our youth? We knew that the church can help us make our youth not only to become more responsible, productive, and well-informed youth of our society but also to be more spiritually guided and messenger of peace.”

“Together, we will empower the youth of Caraga,” Col. Albano added.

The activity ended with a coastal clean-up along Cagdianao beaches and boodle fight where food are served in a long table - a symbol of camaraderie, brotherhood and friendship. (402nd CMO/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


Feature: FNRI develops functional food products from malunggay

By Celina Ann Z. Javier

Functional food products provide health benefits other than their nutritional value.

Functional foods like oats, soy and garlic, are now becoming popular because they have substances that reduce the risk of heart diseases.

Malunggay has high nutritional content and functional properties.

It is classified as functional food because it is not only a good source of vitamin A, calcium, iron and zinc, but also a rich source of antioxidants.

Foods rich in antioxidants may protect our cells from the effects of free radicals which can contribute to the development of heart disease, diabetes, cancers and other diseases.

To make this food and its benefits more accessible to the public, Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) developed malunggay leaves powder (MLP) from which various functional food products can be based.

Thus, malunggay food products like malunggay juice, tea and noodles are now available in the market.

The FNRI-DOST included MLP as ingredient in ready-to-cook veggie soup, ready-to-cook veggie sauce, breakfast cereal and malunggay fish sausage.

Based on a sensory evaluation done by trained taste panelists, the acceptability of the said food products with MLP ranged from “like slightly” to “like moderately”, mostly attributed to the dark green color of MLP.

The food products were also subjected to shelf-life studies where all were stored at room temperature except for the sausage which was stored under frozen condition.
All products were found stable up to four months of storage.

One serving of 250 milliliters of soup with MLP meets 24 percent of the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) per day for vitamin A for Filipino children 7-9 years old. A serving of 333 milliliters of veggie sauce satisfies 29 percent of the nutrient for this group of children. On the other hand, a 25 gram serving of breakfast cereal with MLP provides 17 percent of the RENI while 100 grams of sausage provides the most at 69 percent of the recommended vitamin A.

The food products also contributed significant amount of the calcium requirement per day of the same age group.

Nutritionists at the FNRI recommended using these food products in feeding programs to augment the vitamin A and calcium requirements of children.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City. E-mail: mcv@fnri.dost.gov.ph, Telefax: 837-2934 and 827-3164, or call: 8372071 local 2296 or visit our website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Learnshop highlights parenting

Parenting styles affect the character children develop as they grow to adulthood.

During the October First Friday Affair (FFA) of Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI), employee-participants underwent a learnshop on character-centered parenting, wherein theories and practices of developing a child’s character were discussed.

“A child grows in the family. The type of parenting goals you have will affect you and your child. We should be the person we want our children to become,” Joanne Antiquina, a family life and child development consultant, said.

Together with her husband, Neil, the two consultants tackled five modules on parenting such as parenting styles assessment, the parenting grid and approaches, and best practices to character-centered parenting, among others.

“My parenting goals are to become a source of inspiration, a protector, and a provider to my family,” Anthony Terence Ocampo, deputy director for Professional Development Programs of Kool Adventure Camp (KAC) of RAFI, shared.

During the learnshop, the participants learned that there are three types of parenting goals, namely, survival (just to make through the rearing years of the child), default (provide shallow happiness by giving what is popular), and purposeful (shape the heart of the child by building relationships).

“Grandparents and nannies who are our frontline child care providers should also be oriented on our parenting goals. When we are out, they are the ones who take care of our children,” Neil Antiquina stressed.

Joanne said that if parents want to build strong relationships in the family, they should make every occasion a celebration.

“Even if it is just an ordinary day, make it a moment for the family to bond together. It’s not necessary to hang out outside our homes. We can make small get together inside our homes,” she emphasized.

Some of the best practices on character-centered parenting presented included the following: stress purpose, not performance; coach, don’t cheerlead; relate to engage, not to entertain; and set boundaries, not walls.

At the end of the learnshop, participants were challenged to draw using their foot.

“The activity reflects how we should deal with children. By using our foot in drawing, we establish self-control. In this matter, kids should also have the freedom to experience these things,” Mileesa Lumanog, human resources specialist, shared.

“If you want to understand your child, write with your foot. Empathy is walking in your child’s shoes. It’s rewarding to leave our children not feeling apprehensive but confident that they would become responsible persons,” Joanne said.

“Parenting is for the courageous, not for the faint-hearted,” Neil added.

First Friday Affair is done every month to uphold the learning experience of RAFI employees outside their working assignments.

For more information about RAFI, please contact 418-7234 or visit www.rafi.org.phand www.facebook.com/rafi.org.ph. (RAFI/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Flavor enhancers may increase food intake of elderly

By Celina Ann Z. Javier

When people reach the age of 60 years and above, their sense of taste and smell generally weaken, affecting their food intake.

Older persons tend to eat less because their weak senses depreciate the appeal of food, thereby resulting in malnutrition.

Prompt intervention can prevent older persons from having poor nutrition, because at this stage they are very susceptible to illnesses.

A study by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) determined the effect of flavor enhancers on the dietary intake of older persons.

Sixty seven (67) persons aged 60 years old and above joined the study. Before the start and during the study, 24-hour food intake, anthropometric and clinical data were obtained from the subjects.

One group was given 0.5 grams flavor enhancer while the other group was given 0.5 grams iodized salt. These were added to lunch and supper of the subjects for two months. The subjects tolerated the addition of flavor enhancer and iodized salt.

The study revealed that both interventions increased the energy and all the nutrient intake of the subjects. In addition, body weight and body mass index (BMI) also increased significantly with flavor enhancer use, but not with iodized salt.

The blood pressure was also normal for both interventions. Furthermore, sodium in the blood of the subjects was also within the normal levels.

Thus, adding 0.5 grams of flavor enhancer and iodized salt to the food of the older persons did not have a significant effect on their blood pressure and serum sodium levels.

This study is a scientific proof that addition of said flavor enhancers will not increase the blood pressure of older persons as long as these are used in moderation.

Addition of flavor enhancers may also be a good strategy in increasing the food intake of older persons to increase appetite and improve nutritional status.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City. E-mail: MVC@fnri.dost.gov.ph, Telefax: 837-2934 and 827-3164, or call: 8372071 local 2296 or visit our website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Eggs: Pinoys' most consumed protein-rich food

By Charina A. Javier

“Kumain ng itlog, pagkaing pampalusog (Eat eggs, food that's good for the health),” parents and teachers would often say to encourage children to eat eggs.

Indeed, eggs, specifically chicken eggs, are on the list of the most commonly-consumed foods.

Eggs top the most consumed protein-rich foods in the Philippines, based on the food consumption survey conducted in 2008 conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST).

Chicken eggs ranked eighth among the most commonly-consumed foods, next to rice, sugar, coconut oil, salt, instant coffee, garlic, and bombay onion.

Among the protein-rich food sources, egg is followed by powdered choco milk drink, powdered filled milk, canned fish sardines and galunggong.

Based on the average per capita food intake in 2008, 14 grams of egg or about one-third piece is consumed daily which, over the years, has risen from only eight grams in 1978.

An egg is a cheap source of good quality protein and other nutrients such as fat, vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, B-vitamins and iron.

Eggs contain all the amino acids needed to build and repair body tissues and transport other nutrients, while the protein helps maintain healthy muscles, hair, skin and nails.

It is also good for the eyes because of the carotenoid it contains, particularly lutein and zeaxanthin.

Eggs have naturally-occurring vitamin D for proper absorption and use of calcium which is needed for strong bones and teeth and proper muscle contractions.

The B-vitamins in egg help the body use carbohydrates, protein and fat, sustain good appetite and normal digestion, promote growth and keep the nerves healthy.

The iron in eggs helps build and maintain blood supply, give healthy red color to the blood and prevent simple anemia.

Chicken eggs are also a good source of choline, a nutrient important to cells, the liver, and brain.

The fat in eggs gives additional energy needed to sustain daily activities.

According to Dr. Celeste C. Tanchoco, Scientist III of the FNRI-DOST, an egg a day is alright for healthy and normal individuals.

A study conducted by the FNRI-DOST showed that consumption of up to one egg daily is unlikely to have substantial increase in blood lipid levels.

No wonder, egg is a favorite food of Filipinos. It's a nutritious and relatively cheap source of nutrients.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Why nutrition is important

By Salvador R. Serrano

Is nutrition really important? We need to explain to ordinary people why nutrition is essential because they need to know how this affects health. Nutrition is the food we eat and how the body uses it, while health is a state of complete physical and mental being and not merely the absence of illness or disease. If we are eating right, this contributes to good health because we are able to provide all the nutrients the body needs.

So what does "good" nutrition mean? Good nutrition is achieved when the body gets all the nutrients it needs in the right kind and amount. This is realized when the body is able to process all the foods and the nutrients are well-utilized by the body’s system.

Malnutrition, on the other hand, is a disorder which you get from eating too little, too much, or not eating the right combinations of food.

We often hear, read about or often talk about nutrients, but what are they? Nutrients are what we get from food that the body needs to grow and repair our cells, provide heat to move, work and play; and regulate body processes.

Energy, like the one produced from fuel to power cars, comes from carbohydrates, fats and protein which provide heat that the body needs to perform basic functions of work and play. Proteins are the building blocks of tissues for growth and development and repair of worn-out cells. Fats or lipids also give energy and help in the absorption of vitamins A, D, E, and K. Vitamins and minerals solely come from food and are responsible for regulating various body processes. Other essential substances in the diet are water and dietary fiber which are vital in digestion, absorption and elimination of waste from the body.

Malnutrition

There is also such a thing as "bad" nutrition. We call this malnutrition. When one eats too much food or the wrong kinds of foods, or too much of one kind of food, there is excess of nutrients. This is overnutrition. When we eat very little, a deficiency develops. This is equally a problem and we call this undernutrition. Too much or too little of anything including food is bad for the body.

Malnutrition still persists in the Philippines. Many people are not eating enough of what they need so they are often sick. Others eat too much and they also get sick. For the entire country, there are many factors that contribute to malnutrition. These include faulty food intake, poor distribution of the food supply, inequitable food distribution among the family members, large family size, and low food expenditure as affected by high prices of food and poor income. There is malnutrition also because of poverty, low education level, urbanization as well as infectious diseases and parasitism due to poor sanitation.

Among Filipino children, the other factors are inadequacy of the diet in terms of quality and quantity, declining breastfeeding practice, improper complementary feeding, and lack of immunization. If mothers are not careful when they are not pregnant and when they do not submit themselves for regular pre-natal check-ups when pregnant, this, too, affects the health of their children.

Malnutrition exists in three forms. One is undernutrition which results from inadequate amount of food for a long period of time. Second is overnutrition which results from a excessive intake of nutrients. An imbalance results from a disproportion of the essential nutrients that one needs. When we eat too many foods with the same nutrients and neglect others that our body needs, an imbalance occurs. For example, too much carbohydrate, too much protein, but too little or inadequate amounts of vitamins from fruits and vegetables is bad for the body.

The kinds of malnutrition are acute and chronic malnutrition. Acute malnutrition refers to one's present state of nutrition as indicated by weight loss, while chronic malnutrition is related to past state of nutrition as indicated by stunting and underweight.

There is also what we call primary and secondary malnutrition. Primary malnutrition happens when a person does not eat enough. Secondary malnutrition is when a person eats enough food but factors like illness and environmental factors affect one’s nutritional status.

In the Philippines, the major nutrition problems are chronic energy deficiency, vitamin A deficiency, iron deficiency anemia, and iodine deficiency disorders.

All population groups are affected by malnutrition but most vulnerable are infants, pre-schoolers, and the pregnant and lactating mothers. They are most vulnerable because of changes in their bodies which are related to food intake. Infants and pre-schoolers grow very fast, both physically and mentally; pregnant women experience, body changes due to fetal development in their wombs; and lactating mothers produce milk for their babies.

Malnutrition affects one’s physical and mental development. When a person is malnourished, infections are easily contracted. The body becomes weak, appetite deteriorates and nutrients needed by the body are not absorbed and used efficiently. A sick and malnourished person experiences difficulty in thinking and learning. The child's IQ or intelligence, for instance, relies heavily on the kind and amount of food eaten plus the health condition. So, if a child is slow in learning, moody or inattentive, there is a probability that he or she is malnourished.

Because of malnutrition, we have weak students who do not perform well mentally, while others drop out of classes. Malnutrition also leads to physical weakness, absenteeism, sickness, and death in severe cases. Workers in offices and factories who are malnourished are not as efficient and easily get tired on the job. This leads to low work performance stemming from absenteeism and shortened working hours. Therefore, a weak work force equals weak economy and weak economy equals slow progress of the country.

All of us should be concerned about malnutrition. Malnutrition is a multi-faceted problem so that every sector should contribute to its reduction. Malnutrition is food-related, but there are also other environmental factors aggravating it. One's culture, one's economic state and ecological events like natural and man-made disasters - all directly or indirectly affect the family's nutrition. Fighting malnutrition has been the traditional concern of mothers who are responsible for preparing the family meals everyday. However, women themselves are more affected by malnutrition than men because they give birth year after year and take care of babies one after another, thus becoming more vulnerable to malnutrition. They also produce breastmilk that infants need. Women, too, in developing countries like the Philippines, have multiple domestic or household responsibilities and hardly have enough time to take care of themselves as the husband and children are often their priority concerns.

Achieving proper nutrition

By instinct and through nutrition program involvement, mothers will know that no single food contains all the nutrients in the amounts that our body needs except breastmilk for infants below six months. Therefore, to be sure that the family gets the nutrients the members need for growth and repair of tissues, for energy and to maintain body processes, the mother should ensure that everyone eats a variety of food in every meal everyday.

Good nutrition means satisfying the needs of each family member. Every member of the family has need for the same nutrients but in varying amounts. From the time a child is born, he or she needs all the nutrients increasingly up to old age. For instance, women need more of iron because of their menstrual periods and because they deliver babies, while men especially teenage boys need more energy for sports and other vigorous activities.

Food means a lot to people aside from nourishment. Food is not only something which we eat to make our bodies full and satisfy hunger. Food also means much more to other people. It carries social and cultural meanings. For example, food can be a sign of wealth and power, a form of celebration, a symbol of love, a status symbol, a reward or punishment, or a religious sacrifice. Thus, we have celebration foods, prestige foods, cultural superfoods like staples, and even sex-linked foods.

Proper food preparation is important in relation to nutrition. The way food is handled, cooked and prepared affects its nutrients, and in the long run, what the body eats and absorbs. There are different ways of preparing food for each family member to make sure they enjoy food and eating. It is also important to consider the likes and dislikes of each member of the family every time a homemaker prepares the meals.

Let us remember that proper nutrition is important because it translates to better health and well-being as well as improved productivity which is vital to economic progress.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Helping your workforce to stay fit and healthy

By Divorah V. Aguila

Physical activity and exercise have been proven to help prevent lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease and hypertension.

Companies with wellness program in the workplace have shown that this result in savings, lower absenteeism and better productivity.

Workplace wellness programs can be as varied as possible.

The key is to offer opportunities and incentives for employees to lead healthy lifestyles: eat healthy food, quit smoking and be physically active.

Exercise and physical activity are integral in the prevention and treatment of lifestyle-related diseases.

Most employees would like to eat better, exercise regularly and achieve a normal weight, but simply telling people to adopt a healthy lifestyle isn't helpful.

Here are some tips to companies that have not yet tried incorporating health and wellness activities in your company:

Get the support and involvement of company leaders. If employees will see that the management is supportive of the program, their likelihood to participate in the program is huge.

Create a taskforce or ad-hoc committee that will plan special events, promote employee participation and spread the news about health and wellness program.

Routine physical check-ups among employees will increase employees' awareness of their condition and inspire them to do something about their lifestyle. However, be sure that they are aware of the results.

Monthly wellness lectures can educate employees on eating healthy, increasing physical activities, managing time and stress, and alcohol and smoking cessation.

Organize weight loss competitions, focusing more on lifestyle changes than cash incentives. This gives employees the motivation to participate and value the program.

Company wellness events like sports fest, fun run, or mini-Olympics, can be done quarterly or bi-annual. Events like these will help create an environment that encourages regular physical activity.

A health club will encourage more employees to participate because it is accessible.

Make available information packages such as brochures and posters on food and nutrition to employees. You may also want to publish a company cookbook to which employees can contribute their favorite healthy recipes.

Provide incentives for achieving goals such as healthy behaviors and weight. This can be by way of extra time for walking, discounts on health care premiums or even days off from work.

If funding support is not a problem, corporate health club memberships offered by fitness centers where discounted rates may be given to a number of employees.

Remember, creating this healthy environment does not have to involve significant or expensive changes.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/Fax Nos.: 837-2934 or 837-3164; Direct Line: 839-1839; DOST Trunk Line: 837-2071 to 82 local 2296 or 2284; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Calcium is the least consumed micronutrient in the Filipino diet

By Jund Rian A. Doringo

Ninety-nine percent of calcium is located in the skeleton for bone structure and strength, while one percent is found in the soft tissues, extracellular fluid and plasma for metabolic and regulatory roles.

Specifically, calcium is consumed for the construction, formation and maintenance of bones and teeth, blood clotting and wound healing, muscle contraction, maintenance of cells and connective tissues, blood pressure control and nerve transmission, among others.

According to the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) developed by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2002, calcium requirement differs according to population groups and sex.

The male and female adults 19 – 64 years old need 750 milligrams (mg) per day of calcium, while those 65 years old and over need 800mg/day.

The Philippines has relatively lower recommendation values for calcium than the United States, Australia and other Southeast Asian countries.

Dried dilis, canned fish, sardines, some green vegetables and legumes, seeds and nuts, snails and mollusks are the richest sources of calcium in the diet, while milk, yogurt and cheddar cheese have the highest absorbable calcium.

 The 7th National Nutrition Survey (NNS) by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) revealed that mean one-day per capita calcium intake is at 42.3% of the RENI and that calcium as the least- consumed nutrient in the Filipino diet.

There was a drop in the proportion of households meeting the RENI for calcium from 16.0% in 2003 to 11.5% in 2008.

The survey further showed that six to twelve year-old children had the lowest consumption of calcium according to population groups, with 0.26 grams per day.

Pregnant women had the highest mean one-day calcium consumption among population groups.

In general, the estimated average recommendation for calcium was not met and registered very low proportions across population groups at around 9.8%.

Fish was shown to be the primary source of calcium in the Filipino diet, followed by rice and cereals, vegetables and milk and milk products.

Milk intake, as an excellent source of dietary calcium, was also shown to be poor except in infants.

Calcium intake can be increased through increased consumption of fish and milk in the diet, as well as promoting cheaper sources of calcium.

Promotion of adequate calcium intake throughout the lifespan is strongly encouraged to meet the recommended intakes especially in infants after six months.

Everyone must take part in improving the calcium intake, particularly during the growing years to avoid calcium deficiency-related diseases such as osteoporosis.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: On bended backs

By Divorah V. Aguila

Every now and then we see gray-haired people walking down the streets on bended backs as if searching for something unidentified on the ground. We let them pass by, wondering that perhaps all people upon reaching that "stage" in life will automatically suffer the same fate.

It was only a couple of years ago when media bombarded us with information concerning people with "bended backs" or in medical terms – osteoporosis.

What is osteoporosis? Science defines osteoporosis as a multifaceted disorder in which the skeleton is sufficiently fragile so that it fractures when exposed to the mechanical forces and accidents that are routine to ordinary living. It is a crippling disease characterized by loss of bony tissue from the skeleton and deterioration of bone structure.

Nutritional factors involved in bone health include calcium, phosphorus, protein, vitamins C, D, and K, and various trace minerals. Of these factors, calcium plays the major role and has been the most extensively studied. Among the young, calcium is very important in bone formation and for growth and development.

Dietary studies have shown that Filipinos have very low intakes of calcium. The latest National Nutrition Survey (NNS) conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2008 revealed that about seven in every 10 Filipinos did not meet the average requirement for calcium. The consumption of Filipinos for milk and milk products decreased by seven grams, from 49 grams per person per day in 2003 to 42 grams per person per day in 2008.

According to the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) developed by the FNRI-DOST in 2002, calcium requirement differs according to population groups and sex. Thus, male and female adults aged 19 – 64 years old would need 750 milligrams (mg) per day of calcium, while those 65 years old and over would need 800 mg/day.

We never outgrow our needs for calcium. Since calcium is so often associated with growth, many adults feel they do not need it anymore. This is not true, because calcium is very important for the daily functioning of our body and for the replacement of calcium in our bones.

We can get enough calcium in your diet by taking sufficient amount of milk and milk products and other calcium-rich foods. Other calcium-rich food products include small fishes eaten with the bones like dilis (or anchovies) and sardines, soybean curd known as tokwa or tofu, small shrimps, and green leafy vegetables (like malunggay or horseradish, saluyot or jute, alugbati or malabarshade and mustasa or mustard). These are cheap sources of calcium and commonly eaten by ordinary households.

Ensuring an adequate amount of these calcium-rich foods in your diet will prevent you from worrying about a stooped posture later in life. Though the song "On Bended Knees" topped the music charts a couple of years ago, you don't want to experience the difficulty of having a bent back, do you?

For more information on food and nutrition, contact Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/Fax Nos.: 837-2934 or 837-3164; Direct Line: 839-1839; DOST Trunk Line: 837-2071 to 82 local 2296 or 2284; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Bone health, proper nutrition and healthy lifestyle

By Jund Rian A. Doringo

The bones move, support and protect various organs of the body, produce red and white blood cells and store minerals, essentially enabling the body to perform and maintain specific important duties.

Weakening of the bones results in bone diseases such as osteoporosis, affecting the daily routine of an individual which later leads to injuries and fractures.

Bone strength is dependent on bone density and bone quality, such that bones are most likely to deteriorate as an individual ages, making them more brittle and likely to break.

There are various risk factors of osteoporosis and bone fractures like age, sex, family history, personal history, bone structure and body weight, and menopause.

However, there are also modifiable risk factors of osteoporosis such as smoking, excessive alcohol intake, sedentary living, inadequate calcium intake, caffeine, medications like steroids, excessive thyroid hormone, anti-convulsants, and antacids.

Smoking has been shown to reduce blood supply to the bones, slow the production of bone-forming cells, and impair the absorption of calcium, while excessive alcoholic beverage consumption has been shown to increase bone loss.

An estimated 8.1 million Filipinos have osteoporosis and many are unaware of the disease until fractures appear.

The good thing is that osteoporosis, as well as other bone-related diseases, are preventable. Prevention starts with taking adequate amounts of calcium and vitamin D, initiating a lifestyle change by quitting smoking and limiting alcoholic beverage intake, committing to regular load-bearing activities ideally four days a week or more, and taking care not to trip or fall to avoid injuries or fractures.

According to the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) developed by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST), female and male adults need 750 milligrams of calcium and 5 micrograms of vitamin D everyday.

Milk and milk products like cheese and yogurt, green leafy vegetables, anchovies, sardines and tofu are some of the readily-available good sources of calcium in the Filipino diet. Sun exposure at sunrise is the most cost-effective and convenient way of obtaining adequate amounts of vitamin D in the body.

The seventh recommendation of the Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos (or NGF) says: “Consume milk, milk products and other calcium-rich foods such as small fish and dark green leafy vegetables everyday”.

Moreover, the tenth recommendation of the NGF further says: “For a healthy lifestyle and good nutrition, exercise regularly, do not smoke and avoid drinking alcohol beverages”.

Support your bones with proper nutrition and healthy lifestyle!

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


Tagalog News: LMDA magsasagawa ng Biodiversity Partnership Projects orientation

Ni Danilo S. Makiling

BUTUAN CITY, Nob. 6 (PIA) – Pangunguhan ng Lake Mainit Development Alliance (LMDA) ang pagsasagawa ng isang orientation hinggil sa Biodiversity Partnership Project (BPP) ngayong Nobyembre 7, 2012 sa Gateway Hotel, Surigao City.

Ang orientation ay naglalayung magbigay ng kaalaman sa mga kasamahang ahensya kung paano ang proseso ng Biodiversity Partnership Project sa Forest Land Use Plan (FLUP) at proteksyong inihahanda nito, ani LMDA Chairperson and Surigao del Norte Governor Sol Matugas.

Ang aktibidad ay inihanda matapos matanggap ng LMDA ang BPP na pinunduhan ng United Nations Development Program – Global Environment Facility (UNDP-GEF) at itinataguyod ng Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) ng Department of Environment and Natural Resource (DENR).

Idinagdag din ni Matugas na ang proyekto ay sinimulan matapos ang isang memorandum of agreement (MOA) ng DENR Caraga, implementing partner, LMDA, at responsible partner noong nakaraang Setyembre 5, 2012 sa Suriganon Arts and Culture Center, Surigao City.

Dahil dito, ina-anyayahan ni Matugas ang mga representative ng ibat ibang ahensya ng pamahalaan na dumalo sa orientation at sumuporta upang palakasain ang pag-implementa ng proyekto. (NCLM/PIA-Caraga)