Following increased rate of Non
Communicable Diseases (NCD) in
the country, experts have called on
Nigerians to maintain adequate nutritional diets, as well as
abstain from lifestyle that predisposes
one to health issues like diabetes,
cancer, respiratory disorders, among others.
The experts who spoke at a one-
day workshop organised by Coca
Cola Nigeria in Lagos recently, tagged:
‘Adequate Nutrition and Lifestyle:
Essential for Prevention of Non-
Communicable Diseases,’ said Nigerians must make deliberate attempts
to prevent the numerous health
issues in the country.
Speaking at the workshop, a
Consultant Nutritionist and
Chika Ndiokwelu, said eating unhealthy diets have been
cause a number of preventable diseases, adding that, processed foods
contain more harmful elements than the well known African
foods and vegetables which the country
was used to.
While stating that poor food intake, smoking, harmful use of alcohol and sedentary lifestyle were risk factors responsible for NCDs, she advised that eating of fruits,
legumes, vegetables, engage in regular
physical exercise, reduction of salt intake, reduction in alcohol intake, as well as quitting
smoking, would help a long way in
She described NCDs as chronic but non-contagious medical
conditions which could lead to deformity or death.
“NCDs represent a major threat to health and development in the
21st century, as they account for 60 percent of all deaths and 43 percent of disease burden globally,”
She listed four major NDCs to include; cardiovascular diseases
cancer, chronic respiratory
diseases and diabetes mellitus, adding
that, these four were the world’s biggest killers as they account for
36 million deaths annually.
“With the increasing level of NCDs, if proper measures are not taken, the country may be forced to
allocate more than three per cent of its
healthcare cost for the management of the diseases within the next 10
years,” she said.
Ndiokwelu, called on the Federal
develop a national
policy and action plan on food and nutrition, including the control of
diets related to non-
and producers of food products
should provide accurate nutritional
information on their products to help consumers make informed choices.
In his speech, a Research Fellow,
National Institute for Medical Research, Dr. Bartholomew Brai
said with improved healthy lifestyle
and right diets, NCDs will reduce drastically in the country, adding
that, Nigerians must shun risky factors that predisposes them to various kinds of health issues.
He charged health writers to continue to educate the public
on ways to preventing diseases and general
Meanwhile, the Director of Public
Affairs and Communication, Coca- Cola Nigeria, Mr. Clem Ugorji, said that the company has been striving to
provide clear nutritional values,
offer low calorie or non-caloric
beverages to the public.
Ugorji said the workshop was
organised to educate the public on issues
of nutrition as part of the company’s corporate social
“The recipe of coca-cola has
remained unchanged for 129 years, with
more than 3,600 products in several countries and over 500 brands.
“This was achievable due to our acceptance by the public. We
shall continue to support and provide
the public with health information
because a healthy nation is a wealthy nation.
”The only way to reach the public
is through the media which is why
we are organising this workshop
for them to relate and know our
level of acceptance in the public.
The media also have a role to play by
ensuring that they publish accurate and factual information
so as not to misinform the public, ” he said.