Categorized | National News

Sands to Implement Obesity Prevention Programme

Minister of Health Dr. Duane Sands is gravely concerned about obesity and the horrid diseases that come with it which are more prevalent than ever among Bahamian youth.

This has prompted Dr. Sands’ technical team to conceptualize a prevention and wellness programme to address this issue.

“We have to invest in prevention and wellness in a way that Bahamians buy into it, that when we look into areas like where vendors sell the sugary drinks and snacks to children, all of that is a part of it,” Dr. Sands said.

“We’re talking about a cultural challenge right now, where unfortunately we think it’s ok for somebody to have a soft drink, or a bag of chips, or some candy. When you start talking about fruits and vegetables they are not on that run at all.”

Dr. Sands insists Bahamians modify their way of thinking when it comes to such health issues and lifestyles.

“When we say The Bahamas is the heaviest country in the heaviest region in the world, that’s nothing to be proud of, absolutely nothing to be proud of,” the health minister insisted.

“This is not to shame individuals because I would be shaming myself. If you look at my body mass index I am overweight.”

A common notion among Bahamians is that eating healthy constitutes much more expense.

Dr. Sands expressed quite the contrary during a recent interview with The Bahama Journal.

“You hear this excuse that eating healthy is too expensive. Well climbing a dilly tree isn’t expensive at all. Dilly and coconut are not expensive at all. You have naturally occurring fruits that you can eat on a regular basis and cost you nothing,” he charged.

“I think we have used this excuse about healthy living too much. When was the last time you saw a backyard farm? You can grow tomatoes in your backyard with no problem. You can grow okra in your backyards with no problems.

“I can go on and on because I’ve done it.”

Records indicate that overweight and obesity among the school aged youth have skyrocketed 436 percent since 1988, from 6.4 percent to 34.3 percent.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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