O Fio de Vida Materno

ISLAMABAD – No mês passado, o Green Templeton College (GTC) da Universidade de Oxford realizou o seu Simpósio anual de Mercados Emergentes, no Egrove Park. O tema deste ano foi “A Saúde Materno-Infantil e a Nutrição”. O último diapositivo da apresentação de abertura, a cargo de Stephen Kennedy, membro do GTC, mostrava uma caricatura que representava dois jovens adversários que deviam iniciar uma corrida: um era forte e saudável, ao passo que o outro era magro, limitado, carregava o fardo da doença e enfrentava a barreira maciça da malnutrição. A mensagem era clara: nem todos começam a vida com a mesma hipótese de sucesso.

É evidente que esta percepção não é novidade. O impacto que factores como a pobreza, a alfabetização materna, o saneamento e as condições de habitação têm na saúde da criança - e, por sua vez, nos resultados sociais e económicos - encontra-se bem documentado. O problema é que esses factores não são passíveis de sofrer intervenções isoladas em matéria de saúde pública. Contudo, existe outro determinante social, menos amplamente discutido, que poderia ser alvo dessa intervenção: a alimentação materna.

Desde Hipócrates que se tem discutido a forma como a "natureza" e a "criação" interagem para moldar o desenvolvimento de uma pessoa. Na verdade, mesmo nas civilizações antigas, a alimentação materna adequada era considerada essencial para garantir a sobrevivência e a prosperidade das gerações futuras. No entanto, a pobreza e a ignorância podem frustrar mesmo as melhores intenções.

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