Sunday, 22 February 2015


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), those aged over 30 stand a 20% chance of dying from a non-communicable disease (NCD). That is a worldwide figure, and is probably even higher in Malaysia.

Now, an NCD is something that is preventable - if you make the effort to do so. The 4 main NCDs according to WHO, are: diabetes, cardio-vascular, chronic respiratory disease and cancer.

Each of these can be avoided, or at least mitigated, by a combination of personal fitness, good diet, and healthy living (ie not smoking or over-indulging in alcohol).

We all know about the root causes of diabetes, and have discussed it before in this blog. Essentially it's a lack of exercise, and a diet overloaded with sugar and processed carbs, such as white bread and rice.

But how about cardio-vascular? Needless to say, your general fitness will have a very large bearing on this. But interestingly, the Malaysian Health Ministry has recently focussed on excessive salt intake as being the main culprit here, leading to hypertension and then to cardio failure. Cardio-vascular disease makes up 36% of NCD deaths! Their advice is the same as ours (!) - cut out all processed foods, fast foods, flavour enhancers and the like; whilst eating only fresh meats & fish, fresh vegetables and fruits. Do not add salt to your meals or your cooking, as there is enough sodium (salt) in your diet already. And importantly - be very aware of the salt intake of your children through all the foods mentioned above. You are setting up a cardio-vascular time-bomb for them if you do not act now!

Cancers can be avoided by living a healthy lifestyle. Many reports suggest that a combination of the noxious chemicals used in many processed foods as preservatives, are at the root of our growing cancer epidemic. Other reports focus on all the other chemicals entering our bodies from household cleaning products, paints, agricultural pesticides, animal hormones, industrial chemical pollution and so on. We may not be able to protect ourselves 100% from all this, but we can make a major personal effort to decrease the amounts of chemicals invading our bodies. Try it!


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