The Nagaland Board of School Education (NBSE) has directed all schools in the state to ensure that no junk food are sold within a radius of 200 metres of school compounds.
Consumption of foods high in fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) -- popularly known as junk food -- is associated with increased risk of certain diseases such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, chronic inflammation and hyperinsulinemia with a risk of cardiovascular diseases in later life, NBSE chairman Asano Sekhose said in an official notification in Kohima on Tuesday.
These diseases and childhood obesity have been reportedly found to affect the cognitive and physical development of children adversely causing an irreparable loss to the society, it said.
In this context, the NBSE said the ministry of women and child development (WCD) constituted working group has submitted its report on addressing consumption of junk food and promotion of healthy snacks in schools of India.
The recommendations made through the report have direct bearing on schools and therefore, the NBSE advised all schools in the state to implement it.
The schools have been asked to take measures to ensure that the canteens do not cater any HFSS food such as chips, fried foods, soft drinks, etc and also control the sale of junk food within a radius of 200 metres from the school compound.
The schools have been directed to constitute a School Canteen Management Committee comprising of 7-10 members, including the teachers, parents, students and school canteen operators and that the committee shall be solely responsible for providing safe food to the school children.
Schools are to organise awareness programmes like celebration of Nutrition Week from September 1 to 7 for nutritious food and avoidance of junk food.
The schools are also to impart education on quality nutrition and integration of physical activities during the school hours, besides teaching students about the importance of a healthy active lifestyle and following healthy eating habits.
The NBSE chairperson also notified on creating a set of activities such as debate on food safety, competitions for senior students on topics related to hygiene and sanitation, advantages of healthy lifestyle options.
Making children aware about obesity, junk food and importance of physical activity, was also recommended.