Sunvoice

EDITORIAL: The Healthy Approach To Life Is The Wealthy Approach

We agree with the Minister for Health and Medical Services, Jone Usamate when he said that addressing non-communicable diseases (NCDs) was indeed a challenge. This, he adds, was something that
25 Mar 2015 11:49
EDITORIAL: The Healthy Approach To Life Is The Wealthy Approach

We agree with the Minister for Health and Medical Services, Jone Usamate when he said that addressing non-communicable diseases (NCDs) was indeed a challenge.

This, he adds, was something that was being addressed by his ministry and required collective commitment from all relevant persons.

Realistically, NCDs is a crisis.

It is a tsunami that is about to engulf us, it is something that is realised by the Ministry of Health. We cannot fight NCDs alone.

As Mr Usamate said – “Prevention needs to be the focus and making the right lifestyle choices.”

According to Mr Usamate, the NCDs strategic plan targets action at various levels of health services being at the primary, secondary and tertiary level.

It is a fact that lifestyle is a cause of NCDs and that the health ministry is advocating and encouraging exercise and a healthy diet.

Fruits must be part of your diet daily.

Diets are shifting to processed foods that are higher in fat and sugar.

Because the cost of fruits from overseas and off season vegetables are expensive, the Health Ministry has always advocated for farming and consumption of local fruits and vegetables.

We have always consumed seasonally local grown fresh fruits and vegetables and the Miniser for Health usually advocates that we eat from the garden and not from supermarket.

We should be thankful to the Government for reducing tax on imported fruits and vegetables to add value to Fiji’s fruit and vegetable supply.

In response to the issues raised on school tuck shops selling unhealthy snacks, the health ministry in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, is working on the School Canteen Guidelines, School Gardening and Health Economics Curriculum.

NCDs are currently the leading cause of death in most countries including Fiji.

We need to implement a more forceful campaign against this growing epidemic. Policies and programs are needed without delay to prevent future rises in cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and stroke in Fiji.

Common risk factors for NCDs include physical inactivity, harmful use of alcohol and tobacco, along with poor diet.

An academic said – “Government and stakeholders should work together in stopping the inappropriate marketing of unhealthy food and non-alcoholic beverages to children as well providing access to physical activity programs and nutrition education.

The fight against NCDs must begin from home.

 

Feedback: maikab@fijisun.com.fj

 




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