Non-communicable diseases take heavy toll

Helen Royer
Helen Royer

Non-communicable diseases (NCD) has been the leading cause of mortality and morbidity in Dominica over the last ten years, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, Helen Royer has revealed.

“Over consumption combined with less physical activity has also led to a growing trend of overweight and obesity among our children,” Royer said, during the launch of Caribbean Wellness Day (CWD) on Monday.

To make matters worst NCDs are rising rapidly and low income economies such as Dominica is currently feeling the brunt of it, Royer noted.

“NCDs has now become a major challenge to global development. Unfortunately, low and middle income countries like ours are bearing the brunt of these diseases that will have significant social, economic and health consequences,” she said.

Royer noted that initiatives such as CWD seeks to place emphasis on reversing the trend and effects of NCDs.

“This year we will attempt to place our focus on the youth since we all know that patterns of behavior acquired during childhood and adolescence are more likely to be maintained throughout the life span,” she said.

CWD is observed annually during the second Saturday of September and activities in Dominica include health walks, health sessions, and aerobic classes during the entire month, under the theme “Love That Body, Keep it Bubbling.”

Royer is encouraging churches and Youth groups to promote healthy lifestyles among the public during the month.

Meanwhile Health Educator, Adora Toussaint, pointed out that the goal of CWD is to reduce the burden of NCD by addressing the identified risk factors with the hope that the regions population will be stimulated enough to pay attention to these risk factors and these effects and begin simple and effective lifestyle changes which will influence prevention of and assist in managing NCDs.

An NCD is a disease that is not contagious and risk factors such as a person’s background, lifestyle and environment are known to increase the likelihood of getting the disease.

It is estimated that more than 36 million people die each year worldwide from NCDs.

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14 Comments

  1. Anonymous
    September 4, 2013

    :cry: thy try there best but we are to laid backk

  2. No Man Is God
    September 3, 2013

    This is a touchy subject for me……. it pains me to see so many pple overweight in Dominica some wearing it proudly mindless of the complexities and dangers that comes with being overweight and obese. The high blood pressure and diabetes, cholesterol, coronary heart disease and don’t forget although it may not be directly linked to being overweight it is linked to habits and lifestyles CANCER!!!!!!

    It is especially sad to see that this condition has transcend and handed down to our youth without any remorse whatever.

    If memory serves me right our parents of days gone by took the time out to ensure we were fed wholesome home cooked meals and our play time was outside running and playing with the neighbourhood children

    Today more parents time is invested in other interests and the almighty fast food industry has become there saviour, and the television and countless tablets, phones and other gadgets has taken the roles in our children lives as there friends, playtime, babysitter sometimes and the worst case scenario the parents.

    Its time that we take our health into our hands and reign it in tightly. Set aside time in your all to busy day for 15 minutes of walking, substitute the sweets and frans cakes and tarts for fresh fruits, instead of juice drink water and by all means go back to preparing your meals at home from your freshly and organically grown products.

    Leave the consumption of processed foods alone they dont help in any case.

    I am a working mother of two little ones with as little time on my hands. I drive to every where i have to be but rest assured i set aside 45 minutes to an hour and a half four days a week for vigorous workout at the gym, and still manage to squeeze in playtime for my favourite sport twice a week whilst making the time for work life and my family.

    Take back your life in your hands health is important and in every case “you are what you eat”

  3. Justice and Truth
    September 2, 2013

    The health nurse could play a part. Organize meetings in different parts of Dominica to educate them on the health hazard of this NCD. One of it is obesity which could cause diabetes and high blood pressure.
    It also depends on what is eaten and drank. Some people feel that they should eat a lot at one time to feel satisfied. We should eat moderately and nutritiously. Eat less fat. Eat also fruits and vegetables. Drink less pop if none at all. How many eat fruits and drink ample water, citrus fruits and real, fresh juice including milk?
    I do think that heart attacks, aneurism and strokes could result in lack of practicing the above. Anxiety and stress also play a great part. As we are aware of poverty also contributes to these illnesses. The latter is a worldwide problem.
    In this era of 24/7 television with numerous programs, it is easy to sit in front of the TV for hours and without moving and going out for a walk. Then there is the Internet. This could be another health hazard as we very well know.
    Minister of Health, you are correct. Healthy habits commence from the home and are formed since childhood. The good example and nutritious habits taught may remain with them forever. Do what you can for the youths. However, in the meantime also assist the adults. As long as life lasts, it is never too late to educate them about adopting a healthy lifestyle.
    As for me, I do my utmost to observe health habits but who knows? I ask the Lord to keep me as healthy as possible and to give me long life, if it is His Holy Will. The saying, “There but for the grace of God go I.” We also know the saying, “God help those who help themselves.” He expects we will eat and drink nutritiously and moderately, get ample sleep and rest and do all we can to keep healthy in addition to avoiding excess anxiety and stress. We know how some people could get angry, some in a wink of an eye and remain in this manner for a long time. It is unhealthy.
    God has allotted us life and time. May we make the most of it specifically healthily.

  4. Erickson
    September 2, 2013

    When I was young, everyone around me seemed to think that FAT was good. If you were looking plump, people would think you were doing well. And if you went overseas and didn’t come back looking fat, those at home would say, “He same thing wi!” implying that they expected the person who had gone overseas to put on weight as a sign that they had enjoyed a better life. Well, we now know that being fat is not as good as we thought it was. The people we see carrying a whole lot of weight around are actually walking time bombs. They are at much greater risk for diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease and those other conditions which are ravaging our adult population (and even some young ones).

    A few days ago, I posted the following on facebook: “Good health at the age of 56 doesn’t begin by being careful at 56. It’s the stuff that you do at 6, 16, 26, and 36 (and even 46) that sets you up to enjoy healthy living at 56. Most people either forget or ignore that.” Most people really DO want to enjoy good health at 56, but when they’re younger they’re not interested in the very advice that would help them maintain good health. They simply don’t want to listen. Some say “We all have to die.” True, but too many people die a slow, sad, and painful death through years of suffering, being in and out of hospitals, and spending thousands of dollars on visits and medication that do NOT reverse their condition. What a waste!

    We need to change our thinking. We need to see good health as something that we should invest in–for our own personal fulfilment and quality of life. We need to return to a plant-based diet and an active lifestyle. I wish nurse Royer, Nurse Toussaint, and those working with them the very best as they try to get the message out there. More power to you!!

  5. kathrine Joseph
    September 2, 2013

    Where is the missiles throwing for this topic it is very interested, Ben Dover give your views am waiting it is happen right in you all country LOL

    • Ben Dover
      September 2, 2013

      LOL….why are you so interested in our country? You don’t live here….for you we are a just a bunch of mud slinging people, yet that interest you?

      Where you live must be real boring. lol lol

  6. Hah
    September 2, 2013

    “Low and middle income countries” these are the areas which do not check on what is imported to be consumed. So eat less of the wrong thing = obesity. Min of health please check on the things imported for us to consume. Remember GIGO

  7. neutral
    September 2, 2013

    once upon a time when i walked in Roseau i would see fit agile peolpe busy going about their busines. Today it like these people are on a “fat high”. all larger than life, big belly men and women cannot see their feet, lumdering and breathing hard along the side walks not giving u space to pass.
    If i sound negative, i do not mean to be.i mean it is time we get active again, eat less and less often and diet well (less carbs, more lean meat and good fats {yes there are good fats,do your research}to name a few)

    • Anonymous
      September 2, 2013

      nobody walks these days bus to go everywhere, no body walks from Roseau to Goodwiil or to Pottersville, even in the villages everybody wants
      ride we have become a set of lazy fat people and its taking its toll on us, lets get moving again Dominican*****

      • Justice and Truth
        September 2, 2013

        Do not blame them. I would not call them lazy. There are more vehicles in Dominica than ever before. There are many buses which will take them to wherever they may be going. Obviously, they will prefer using these means which are necessary to avoid the hot sun and also to decrease time spent in walking. This is progress and the price of progress.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2
  8. Peacock
    September 2, 2013

    Some of us advocating change need to start to look at ourselves and use ourselves as role models or the change agent so that others can follow.

    I will not contract a personal trainer who is obese or less fit than I am.

  9. Whoop Whoop
    September 2, 2013

    And your point is .Not being on the media does not mean that the others don’t work.

  10. Hopeful
    September 2, 2013

    This is the only PS I’m seeing or hearing in the media.

  11. Anonymous
    September 2, 2013

    :-D :lol: :oops: :-? 8)

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