7th April 2020, has been dedicated to celebrate the work nurses and midwives do and to remind leaders of the critical roles they play in keeping the world healthy.
Non communicable diseases (NCDS) collectively account for 71% of all world mortalities. NCDS have primarily been driven by four risk factors i.e. tobacco use, physical inactivity, alcohol abuse and unhealthy diet. NCDS include, cardiovascular diseases (hypertension, gestational hypertension, eclampsia and pre-eclampsia, heart disease, stroke, cardiomyopathy etc.), Cancer, Chronic respiratory diseases (e.g. asthma) & Diabetes (including gestational diabetes).
This year honors the work nurses and midwives do by reducing their work burden from NCDs. Do this by consistently practicing the following simple guidelines:
Eat more fruits and vegetables
- WHO recommends intake of at least 5 portions of fruits and vegetables per day.
- One standard size cup equals to one serving/portion.
- Mix a wide variety of fruits and vegetables in your daily meal plan.
- Add a balanced diet and drink a lot of water on top of this.
Exercise & weight reduction
- Do at least 30 minutes of moderate to intensive physical activity each day.
- Exercise helps to maintain healthy weight. Normal B.M.I. range is 18.5-24.9.
- Obesity may predispose one to heart disease, diabetes, gestational diabetes, osteoarthritis ,hypertension and some cancers (breast, prostate, kidney colon & ovarian).
Reduce alcohol intake
- Limit and avoid harmful use of alcohol.
- Alcohol intake may predispose you to developing, diabetes, liver cancer, dementia, Alzheimer’s, unsafe sexual practices, addictions, high blood pressure, accidental injuries, alcohol withdrawal, heart diseases, stroke and dysfunctional relationships.
Stop smoking and vaping
- Even a single smoking session-including Bhang use, is bad for your health.
- E-cigarettes are ‘normalizing smoking’ thus presenting a public health threat particularly among young adults. Vaping is not an alternative ‘safe’ smoking.
- Quit to reduce your risk of developing Lung cancer, COPD, ectopic pregnancy ,TB, erectile dysfunction, diabetes ,arthritis, reduced immunity , colorectal cancer, acid reflux, dementia, Alzheimer’s and heart disease.
Take care of your mental health
- Protect your mental health and take positive steps to reduce stress.
- Meditation, yoga, adequate sleep, breathing exercises, prayer, listening to music, practicing hobbies etc. can help you stay stress free in turn boost your mental health.
Esther Njenga. Registered Clinical Officer. PIU Medical Department.