Thursday, December 18, 2008
Zimbabweans urged to eat wild fruits
Zimbabweans have been called upon to sample the large variety of wild fruits, tubers and okra-like vegetables, which become more abundant as the rainy season progresses.Zimbabweans have been called upon to sample the large variety of wild fruits, tubers and okra-like vegetables, which become more abundant as the rainy season progresses.The call was made by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Science and Technology Development Professor Francis Gudyanga. Research has shown that Zimbabweans have now turned to wild foods, fruits and roots searched from the bush to see them through food challenges being faced in the country.Scientists say the wild foods, fruits and roots are critical since they help in the fight against diseases such as diabetes, obesity and cancer which are now a major public health challenge in the country.Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Science and Technology Development Professor Francis Gudyanga says scientific research has revealed that wild fruits and berries which include nhunguru, matamba, maroro, masau, matohwe, nhengeni and tsambatsi among others contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.Professor Gudyanga added that most of these foods have Phytochemicals which offer frontline defenses against diseases such as cancer.Research has also proved that tubers, which include madhumbe, mufarinya, tsenza, tsangadzi and others have both medicinal and nutritional value.Scientists are looking into most of these crops since knowledge of crops that traditionally represent a significant component of the staple diet of rural communities has become important in view of chronic diseases ravaging Africa. Wild foods are a source of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients which complement the staple crops eaten by many of the vulnerable people, including children and the elderly.
We wonder how much tsangadzi the Permanent Secretary is giving to himself and his family during these tough times for Zimbabweans?