Consumption of eggs and meat in mid-day meals could lead to “lifestyle disorders” among students, a position paper submitted by a Karnataka education policy panel has suggested, The Times of India reported on Thursday.

The paper also recommended eating “satwik food” – a term often associated with a vegetarian diet – for the well-being of the mind and emotions.

The position paper is part of the process under which states have been asked to make suggestions to the Centre about the new National Education Policy. The Union government and the National Council of Educational Research and Training will review the papers before implementing them as part of the policy.

The Karnataka government has formed 26 committees to prepare position papers on the school curriculum, according to India Today. Each position paper is led by a chairperson and five to six educationists.

The paper on “health and wellbeing” submitted to the Karnataka government suggested: “Given the small body frame of Indians, any extra energy provided through cholesterol by regular consumption of egg and meat leads to lifestyle disorders”.

The paper has been chaired by K John Vijay Sagar, the head of the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, The Times of India reported.

The paper claimed that disorders and ailments like diabetes, early menarche and primary infertility were on the rise in India due to animal-based foods which interfere with hormonal functions in human beings.

It added that eggs, flavoured milk and biscuits should be avoided in the diet of children to prevent “obesity and hormonal imbalance”, The News Minute reported.

Serving grams or bananas to those who do not consume meat or egg could lead to “emotional distress” among children studying in the same class, the paper argued.

“...Treating all children equally and with no to ‘Pankti Bedha’ [food discrimination] is authentic Indian philosophy or Dharma,” the paper noted.

A section of the paper dealt with the concept that one must stay healthy to attain the four goals of life – “dharma, artha, kama and moksha” – righteousness, prosperity, pleasure and liberation. These are four virtues regarded in the Hindu scriptures as purusharth, or goals of mankind.

The paper also included a table with various food items and recipes marked as “good” or “bad”.

For example, a high amount of sugar, salt and meat has been classified as bad, while one of the items under the good section is, “food that has been prepared in grandmother’s way”, The News Minute reported.

Controversy over ‘Vedic roots’ of Pythagoras’ theorem

Another position paper of the Karnataka education panel which came to light earlier this week claimed that Pythagoras’ theorem has Vedic roots.

Madan Gopal, the head of the state education panel task force said that the ancient Indian mathematician Baudhayan had laid down Pythagoras’ theorem in Vedic texts.

“Gravity and Pythagoras have roots in Vedic maths...This is an Indic-centred approach,” Gopal had said.

In an interview with the Hindustan Times, Gopal on Thursday cited Quora as the source for making the claim. “If you just go to Quora or Google, there is a lot of debate and discussion and evidence that it was Baudhayan, who propounded this theory which was subsequently adopted by Pythagoras,” he told the newspaper.