By Ibrahim HassanWuyo
President of Nutrition Society of Nigeria, Bartholomew Brai has stressed the need for evidence based data generation and dissemination for the benefit of members of the society, especially those with acute health challenges.
Brai said that data was key to managing ailments.
He disclosed this at Annual General Meeting of Nutritionists from across 36 states of Nigeria including the FCT , who converged on Kaduna to deliberate on outcome of research done by their members on different Nutrition based studies , with a view to finding solutions to Nigeria’s malnutrition-prone ailments.
While emphasizing the aptness of information sharing amongst key nutrition practitioners in solving key health issues in the society , Dr Brai urged Nutrition professionals to always cross-check accuracy of information before dishing it out to the target audience for better consumption.
” This year’s Conference, which is the first Hybrid meeting of the society that combines physical and virtual format, aims to promote and foster the study and practice of nutrition in its widest sense, and provide a common forum for Nutritionists and Public Health professionals to liaise and co-operate with universities, research institutes, government departments, national commissions, corporate organisations and other similar bodies for the exchange of professional and other relevant information in the promotion of Nutrition, and National Development.
” The 2020 NSN AGM and Scientific conference, a meeting of professional, non-governmental association founded in 1963 at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State kicks-started on Monday with a pre-conference skills building workshop comprising of four major sessions dwelling on data visualization and management as tools for empowering
“We are having this conference in the middle of a pandemic, the impact of which has been all-encompassing. From overburdened healthcare facilities, to weakened economic activities, the pandemic has made us more vulnerable. More than seven million Nigerians were said to have suffered from acute hunger in the second quarter of this year alone, This situation has amplified the need for improved nutrition action in the country,” Dr, Brai said.
In his research presentation at the Conference , Mr Iheme Gideon , a lectuer and resercher of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture , Umudike , Abia state mentioned meals rich in fibre , frolic acid , fruits and vegetables as necessary combination of food in fight against life threatening ailments such as diabetes , hypertension , sickle cell ammonia among others.
He urged Nigerians to be cautious of the food they eat daily by looking up their nutritional values before consumption , doing so , according to him was a proactive step in saving oneself from serious ailment capable of landing an individual in hospital.
In her recommendation for the academia, Dr. Adeyemi said, “The academia can provide leadership for implementing coordinated nutrition data strategies across institutions, sectors, and partners, to meet policy and programme needs, institute measures to harmonize nutrition data across sub national levels and invest in capacity strengthening.”
According to her, this could help foster a culture of data use and help disseminate knowledge and experience.
She said there is a need for the establishment of a food data consortium in Nigeria. “We need a nutrition data revolution which can stand over time,” Dr. Adeyemi said.