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How To Calculate Hunger The New Way

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hunger


Is hunger directly proportional to the wealth increase or not is a million-dollar question, which you will learn to answer with the help of this blog.


Recently, an article published in the New York Times Sunday Review, talked about the correct way to “measure hunger.”


Referring to the reportedly rising hunger levels in economic giants like China and India, the article said that it was the unequal distribution of wealth, inefficient or indifferent governments and aid agencies and the recent hike in food prices globally, which was leading to more and more people staying hungry.


However, it was also said that this hunger could also be a result of the means in which hunger is calculated.


Under this new method,  a baseline is made up of staples like rice, wheat, etc and one needs to find out how many calories does that particular person consume. This baseline is called “staple calorie share.” The number of calories, we thus consume, can further be analyzed for the source. For instance, we get more calories from cheaper foods like rice and fewer calories from expensive items like meat.


Therefore, instead of calculating the total calories consumed, one can give a try to this new method, which is not only less messy and more accurate, but may also revolutionize the whole concept of hunger, as seen in its present form.


 


Why Staple Calorie Share


There are many shortcomings of the standard approach to calculate hunger level of human beings. The first one is that it is very hard to calculate the exact number of calories being consumed because the number of calories consumed depends upon a number of factors, all of which are not measureable. In addition, the body is unable to absorb all the calories during and after the meal, as a result of which, we can never be sure of the number of calories thus consumed by the person.


 


The staple-calorie-share approach takes care of both the problems.


Sample this: In China, according to the standard method to calculate hunger, there has been only a fraction of increase in the number of people consuming less than 2100 calories. The number of such people had increased from 53% to 67%. However, the staple-calorie method measured that instead of an increase, there has been a considerable decrease in the number of hungrier peasants from 49% to 32%.


Therefore, instead of 150 million hungry Chinese, there are 200 million lesser Chinese who are hungry.


The perpetrators of the new method insist that hunger is a critical issue and whether they use the new or the old method of calculation, the fact remains that there are hundreds of millions of people in the world who are hungry at present.


 


Image Credit: worldvision.org 

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