Food habits and nutritional status in forest based tribes: A case of soligas of Chamarajanagar district in Karnataka
Geetha M Yankanchi, Channesh TS
Soligas, live in foothills of Biligiri Rangana Hills (B.R.Hills) and Male Mahadeshwara Hills (M.M. Hills) of Chamarajanagar district. Soliga is one of the rare and popular tribes of Karnataka. The soligas lived here for centuries and have had a continuous and intimate interactions with the forest, deriving most of their basic requirements such as food, fodder, fuel and fibre from the forest. Agriculture is the major occupation and collection of forest produce is another means of their livelihood. Finger millet is the major staple crop grown and its foods form an important item in their daily diet. They have also dependent on variety of gathered food from the forest. These foods include roots and tubers, greens and fruits. They live in unique physical, socio-economic and cultural environment, isolation from general population. In view of their habitat the food intake is influenced by vagaries of nature with large seasonal variation depending upon the availability of agricultural and forest produce. Therefore an attempt was made to assess their diet and nutritional status. The results reveal that the mean intakes of all the nutrients, except calcium were lower than the recommendation of the Indian Council of Medical Research.