Nidhi Sinha and Maya Kumari,
Department of Home-Science, J.D. Women,s College Patna
In nutrition-insecure regions of rural Bihar, a farming system with a focus on nutrition can prove effective in improving access and availability for nutrient intake. In 2022, a few villages in Patna district, Bihar were involved in increasing their crop diversity, through the intercropping of pulses and cereals, promotion of seasonal fruits and vegetables, and nutrition awareness. About 75-80 percent of households voluntarily agreed to be involved, for whom the reported dietary habits were recorded, before nutrition interventions and, after the interventions. This study reports the findings from reported nutritional changes for the two years. Household food consumption is converted into its nutrient content and normalized by the demographic composition of the households. The intake of micronutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, and calcium show more significant improvements compared to calories and proteins. This is partly because the intervention focused more on dietary quality than on improving energy-dense food. The changes are more apparent in some villages as their nutrient intakes and dietary diversity were low initially. Households in Naubatpur village benefitted substantially from the newly introduced schemes for clean cooking fuel and sanitation thereby improving a hygienic environment that would enable improved nutrient absorption.