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Adopt Good lifestyle To Mitigate Chronic Disesases – SOLONg

Nigerians have been urged to adopt good lifestyle practices in order to mitigate the prevalence of chronic diseases in the country.

The President, Society of Lifestyle Medicine of Nigeria, SOLONg, Dr. Ifeoma Monye, made the call during its 4th International Conference and Annual General Meeting, which was held virtually.

Dr. Monye, who lamented the prevalence of chronic diseases such as prostate cancer amongst Nigerians, blamed it to lifestyle practices and behavioral choices of the people.

According to her, “Deaths from Non Communicable Diseases, NCDs are on a sharp increase in Africa. A lot of people are dying from chronic diseases more than HIV/AIDs, COVID-19. The WHO predicated that this will still get worse unless we act decisively”.

“We SOLONg are poised to collaborating with various stakeholders, practitioners to ensure that our nation’s medical professionals and allied health workers become equipped to identify and eradicate the root causes of diseases”.

“Lifestyle Medicine should be the optimal whole person treatment option for chronic diseases which will go a long way in reducing the burden of diseases directly or indirectly with NCD, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDs, poverty related conditions including maternal and child health problems”.

She however, identified the six pillars of lifestyle medicines and interventions to include – whole food plant based diet, minimal processed food, adequate restorative sleep, regular physical activities, avoidance of toxic substances, management of stress and positive social connections.

“Life style medicine is a desirable value based care as it reduces cost and produces superior patient outcomes. SOLONg is ready to offer an immediate sealable reliable solutions reaching the throngs of already practicing clinicians, helping to usher in sustainable life style medicine education in our medical schools so as to ensure that medical practitioners are able to prescribe life style medicines especially medicine as food”.

The SOLONg President, therefore, called on the Federal Government to enact policies that would encourage individuals and communities to make healthy lifestyle changes as well as introduce new taxes on tobacco, sugary and acholic drinks which would reduce its consumption level.

One of the resource persons, Dr. Shireen Kassan, who is the founder of Plant-Based Health Professional, UK, in her keynote address, said unhealthy diet is responsible for 26% of death globally while dietary risk factors are responsible for 71% of premature deaths in Africa including Nigeria.

Dr. Kassan, who decried the spate of food insecurity and nutritional deficiency in Nigeria, called for proper life style medicine interventions in order to halt the trend.

The theme of the conference is ” The role of Lifestyle Medicine in Redefining Health”

By Ifeanyi Osita Edited by Grace Namiji

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