Business organizations in the country have been urged to encourage their employees to live a healthy lifestyle to tackle the significant increase of non-communicable diseases in the country.
Fiji Medical Association President Dr. Iferemi Waqa made this special plea while addressing heads of various different corporate organizations at the University of the South Pacific Lautoka Campus on June 21.
This particular health and wellness awareness program was initiated as part of the university’s 50th anniversary celebration. USP Lautoka Campus Director Dr Pramila Devi pointed out that the university is taking a leading role in ensuring that people adhere to healthy life style considering the rise in NCDs, stress and depression related cases in Fiji.
Dr. Waqa informed the industry leaders present at the health forum that in 1970’s the prevalence of diabetes which is new and old recorded cases were only 2% in Fiji but now by 2020 the prevalence of diabetes in the adult population will be 25% which means one in every four people in Fiji will have diabetes.
He emphasized that within 50 years the numbers of diabetes cases in Fiji will significantly increase which is a major worry for the nation.
The Associate Professor in Surgery from the Fiji National University said that rather than putting the whole blame on the nation’s public health sector individuals have to seriously screen their current live style.
“There has been drastic change in our living pattern now compared to what our parents and elders used to adjust to in the 70’s era.
“In this modern days exercise is something we Fijians have gone away from which is directly contributing to rising cases of NCDs in the country.
“Therefore exercise is something we want companies to champion because never mind how healthy our diet is without exercise we will not be able to achieve the best of our health.”
Dr. Waqa reiterated that it becomes an utmost responsibility of each and every business organization in the country to encourage their employees to do regular exercise as the current trend shows that young people are not exercising anymore.
Meanwhile, participants at the health forum were also part of a stress relieving Yoga and meditation session undertaken by visiting Yoga and wellness coach from South France Coralie Imbert.
Ms Imbert who has been a Windsurf and Kiteboard French champion stressed that Yoga is a very simple solution to a healthy livelihood along with reducing stress and depression.