| Wani Roslan |
OBESITY contributes to major diseases and affects one’s quality of life. It can lead to lack of self-confidence, increase in depression, social issues, relationship problems, obstructing one’s normal daily activities.
This was highlighted during a talk on ‘Obesity and Diabetes among the Community and its Prevention’ yesterday which was held at Dewan Al-‘Afiah at the Ministry of Health (MoH) in conjunction with the National Campaign Prevention of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) 2014.
The talk on obesity was delivered by Noor Azwan bin Ismail, a nurse and diabetes educator at the Diabetes Centre of RIPAS Hospital. He defined obesity as abnormal fat accumulation or having excess fat that can affect one’s Body Mass Index (BMI), a measure of relative weight based on an individual’s mass and height which is a standard way to diagnose obesity and overweight-related health issues.
“Cultures, modernisation, lack of physical activities and dietary changes are among the factors that increase the rate of obesity and diabetes,” he said.
He explained that there are three classes of obesity complications that lead to health problems – Class 1 Obesity which leads to type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol level and stroke, Class 2 Obesity leads to heart problems, high blood pressure, gout and arthritis, and Class 3 Obesity can lead to pancreas cancer, kidney cancer and breast cancer as well as affect fertility in women.
“A weight loss of 10 per cent helps reduce the risks of high blood pressure, glucose and cholesterol in the blood, which are beneficial to physical and mental health and social life It also helps to reduce the risk of premature death and overcome the complexities of personal care,” he added.
Noor Azwan gave out tips that can be practised for a healthy lifestyle. “A healthy and balanced diet is important. Regular exercise for about 30 minutes five times a week and changing lifestyle habits can help prevent obesity.”
Another talk was delivered by Murdenillah bin Murni, also a nurse and diabetes educator at the Diabetes Centre of RIPAS Hospital, where he pointed out that diabetes is ‘the mother of all diseases’ which leads to heart problems, kidney failure, stroke, blindness and high blood pressure.
“According to the National Health and Nutritional Survey 2009-2011, 12.5 per cent of the population of Brunei Darussalam is affected with diabetes and it is the third cause of death after cancer and heart diseases,” he added.
Murdenillah said that the people who face the high risk of diabetes are those who are obese, those lacking physical activity and those with a family history of diabetes. He highlighted that there are three main types of diabetes namely type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes, a type of diabetes that affects women during pregnancy.
“In Brunei Darussalam, an estimated five per cent of the population has type 1 diabetes, which often occurs among children and teenagers. Those with diabetes will require life-long insulin injections. It is better to adopt a healthy lifestyle to prevent diabetes,” he said.
He further explained that type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes in Brunei compared with other types of diabetes. “Diabetes can be managed through dietary control, regular exercise and taking diabetic medication.”