Sambhavna Trust launches a book on packaged snacks hazard
Children from the communities where the groundwater is contaminated by Union Carbide’s industrial waste as well as members of the Clinic were present at the launching of the book.
Through pictures and words, the 20 page book describes the toxic chemicals present in the material in which processed snacks are packaged. It also talks about the production of extremely poisonous chemicals when the empty packets are burnt. Other environmental impacts of these packets are floods in cities due to choking of sewers, deaths of cows and contamination of soil and ground water when they are buried.
The book goes on to describe the adverse health effects of the processed snacks that children are attracted to on a wide scale. It talks about obesity, heart diseases, allergies and even cancers that could be caused due to the artificial colours, flavours, preservatives, sweeteners, and other additives contained in the processed snacks.
When the book is turned upside down the reader gets a sense of the healthier alternatives to consuming packaged snacks. Hence the name Ulat Palat which means upside down. Alternatives include recipes for salads and snacks that are easy enough to be made by a ten year old at home.
Members of the Sambhavna Trust Clinic appealed to parents and teachers to pay special attention to making children aware of the harmful impact of packaged snacks on their own health as well as the health of the planet. They said that given the aggressive advertisement of harmful processed foods there was a great need for parents to rise up to the challenge of finding healthier and tastier alternatives for children.
The Sambhavna Trust Clinic provides free medical care to survivors of the Union Carbide disaster in Bhopal, carries out medical research and community health work and grows herbs and manufactures Ayurvedic medicines. It is funded solely through individual donations since its inception in 1996.
30,000 survivors of the December 1984 disaster and those exposed to contaminated groundwater are currently registered at Sambhavna for medical care through modem medicine, Ayurveda, Panchakarma and Yoga.