Saturday, May 25, 2013

Somalia Food And Health

The Somali cuisine is not a mixture of traditional recipes and an influence from Persian, Indian, Turkish and Italian food. The food served in Somalia has to be halal food, as per the Muslim beliefs. The traditional Somali usually starts his days with the shah or tea followed by canjeelowhich is similar to a pancake. This canjeelocan be either eaten with soup or stew. Porridge (known as boorash) is generally eaten with butter in the capital area. For lunch, baasto, bariis, kamuun, heyland qaranfuul are the main dishes in the meal. They stand for a mixture of pasta and rice with flavors of cumin, cardamom and cloves. Sooris generally eaten with this meal and is a form of cornmeal. Camel meat is considered as an exquisite item and is a sign of class in the region. The Indian roti is called as kamisin Somalia and can be eaten with meat or vegetables. 

Dinner or casho(as it is called in Somali) is the meal eaten generally after 9 pm. Cambuulois the most common dinner prepared over there, which is a combination of beans butter and sugar. A survey also revealed that 83% of the population prefers the above mentioned dish for dinner. Flavored milk is consumed before sleeping. Sweets and snacks generally made in Somalia include Xalwaand Sambussa. The former is a version of the Indian Halwa and the latter is an Indian Samosa. 

The food situation in Somalia currently is very bleak. Due to poor monsoon, civil war and drought, food scarcity is predominant especially in the southern region. The efforts taken by UN have considerably improved the situation but a lot needs to be done to feed the entire population. Due to this food problem, health in Somalia is of serious concern. The life expectancy for a man is 48.2 years and that of a woman is 51 years. Infant mortality rate is 109.2 per 1000 births which mean that one in every ten children dies. Maternal mortality rate is currently at 1100 per 100000 births. The civil war destroyed most of the health infrastructure in the region. About 98% of the females underwent female circumcision before marriage. Also 93% of the men are circumcised. 

The health ministry is currently rebuilding the complete health infrastructure by handing over health care to the private sector. Good food, potable water and sanitation facilities are a requirement to overcome the health problems in the region
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