This year South Africa celebrates National Nutrition Week from 9 to 15 October as a joint initiative between the Department of Health, the Association for Dietetics in South Africa (ADSA), the Nutrition Society of South Africa (NSSA), the Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa (HSFSA) and others.
It’s an opportunity to look critically at the nutrition choices we make as individuals and parents and work towards leading healthier, more balanced lives with optimal nutrition.
With nutrition in the spotlight this week, Rama wants to remind South Africans of the importance of a good breakfast, particularly for schoolchildren.
Unilever recently commissioned a scientific white paper seeking to clarify the value of habitually eating a nutritious breakfast, in relation to the growth and development of children in South Africa (See attached). Research shows that poor nutrition among school-age children diminishes their cognitive performance either through physiological changes or by reducing their ability to participate in learning experiences, or both. Without a good breakfast, children can experience difficulty concentrating and performing complex tasks, even if the child is otherwise well-nourished.
Studies compiled in the scientific white paper, revealed that school age children who regularly skip breakfast are not likely to concentrate in class, thus affecting school performance. Studies also show that 86% of children reported that eating breakfast before school helped them to concentrate better and 89% said that it gave them energy for the rest of the day.
In response, Rama announced that it will tackle the issue of improving breakfast consumption of South African children to assist them in leading healthier lives and improving their school performance.
Rama is addressing the issue in two ways – through a schools programme that teaches kids the importance of a good breakfast every day and through a digital programme for parents.
Last month the Good Breakfast Schools Programme launched in 360 schools in the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal – It’s a 4-week behaviour change programme that teaches children the importance and make-up of a good breakfast through interactive classes, including a Breakfast Pledge and song, The Breakfast Beat, written by musician and Good Breakfast ambassador, ProVerb.
“In the song, are the fundamentals of what makes a Good Breakfast,” said ProVerb, “Kids can sing the song, recite it to themselves and it can help them make good breakfast choices. It can also help to encourage parents to be a part of the process, to help their kids prepare a good breakfast in the morning so they can have a great day.” Click To Download Song
By following the journey of the Good Breakfast comic book characters, primary school children learned to understand how the major food groups contribute towards a well-rounded breakfast, to deliver optimal morning nutrition. The programme also featured exercises for children to work through with their parents, to reinforce the messages at home. Even with the best intentions, many parents may be surprised to find that their children aren't getting the best possible breakfast nutrition. But, through the Good Breakfast Programme, they are able to work with their kids day to day to improve their breakfast habits at home.
The online programme reaches parents via Rama’s website and social media pages and includes the Breakfast Check, accessed via website or Facebook messenger, allowing parents to assess their family’s breakfast habits and help them to make better choices. Rama’s website is a hub of information and inspiration relating to breakfast nutrition and choices.
This National Nutrition Week put your breakfast habits to the test! Do the Breakfast Check at http://www.rama.co.za/breakfastcheck/
Click here to download the images.
Unilever is one of the world’s leading suppliers of Food, Home and Personal Care products with sales in over 190 countries and reaching 2 billion consumers a day. It has 169,000 employees and generated sales of €53.3 billion in 2015. Over half (58%) of the company’s footprint is in developing and emerging markets. Unilever has more than 400 brands found in homes around the world, including, Rama, Dove, Knorr, Domestos, Hellmann’s, Lipton, Magnum and Axe.
Unilever’s Sustainable Living Plan commits to:
- Helping more than a billion people take action to improve their health and well-being by 2020
- Halving the environmental impact of our products by 2030
- Enhancing the livelihoods of millions of people by 2020
Unilever was ranked number one in its sector in the 2015 Dow Jones Sustainability Index. In the FTSE4Good Index, it achieved the highest environmental score of 5. It led the list of Global Corporate Sustainability Leaders in the 2016 GlobeScan/SustainAbility annual survey for the sixth year running. Unilever was ranked the most sustainable food and beverage company in Oxfam’s Behind the Brands Scorecard in 2016 for the second year.
About Unilever South Africa:
Unilever South Africa (Pty) Ltd is one of the largest FMCG companies in South Africa. The Company is over 100 years old, with brands like Rama, Sunlight, OMO, Lux, Knorr, Vaseline, Shield, Sunsilk, Flora etc. that are household names throughout the country. Unilever South Africa has over 3 500 direct employees based across two offices and seven manufacturing locations in South Africa. The company has a created a further 10, 000 plus indirect jobs through its value chain. It is rated as one of South Africa’s best employers. For more information visit –www.unilever.co.za
For more about Unilever, refer to www.unilever.com
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