Heart to Heart

HOSA event aims to spread awareness on malnutrition
Graphic made by Mihira Manickam and Akshaya Gummadavelli with Canva
Graphic made by Mihira Manickam and Akshaya Gummadavelli with Canva

In HOSA, sophomores Mihira Manickam and Akshaya Gummadavelli will be competing in February for their community awareness event with the mission of promoting healthy eating habits and improving overall well-being. They started preparing for their event in the fall and have until January to get more people to fight for their cause. 

“We’ve been a great team because we cooperate well with each other and we have a good understanding of each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” Manickam said. “Our ideas and efforts have allowed us to develop creative ideas and strategies to help us accomplish our goals and deadlines.”

In addition to the event, Manickam and Gummadavelli started the Heart to Heart campaign to spread awareness about malnutrition. They have reached out to pediatricians and dieticians about nutritional intake and posted the Q&A on their Instagram, @rhscommunityawareness.

“We picked malnutrition because it is a vital issue that many do not know about and we wanted to help raise awareness and encourage people to take action,” Manickam said. “We believe that [the topic] of malnutrition for our competition can help to make a difference in the fight against it.”

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Malnutrition occurs when the body lacks the nutrients needed, which can cause mental and physical strain. Some causes of malnutrition are poor diet, problems absorbing nutrients, not having access to food and more. 

“Malnutrition is an important issue because many children and young adults are not aware of what undernutrition or overnutrition can lead to in the future,” Manickam said. “Every individual must know the basics of nutrition and how to prevent diseases caused by malnutrition in the body.”

Manickam and Gummadavelli plan to contact food donation centers or homeless shelters to serve healthy and warm meals to those who cannot access healthy options. 

“We should continue to strive to improve and innovate ways to help out,” Manickam said. “[We need to] bring awareness about what malnutrition is and what it can lead to.” 

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