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Embrace local foods to tame lifestyle diseases-Nutritionist

Meru residents have been urged to get back to indigenous foods in order to protect themselves against lifestyle diseases including cancer.

Speaking to KNA, a nutritionist based in Meru town Mr Paul Kiambi said most of the diseases that were bedevilling the residents and Kenyans at large could be avoided through the uptake of indigenous foods that are full of vital nutrients in the body.

Mr Kiambi who owns an outlet in the town where he prepares various types of foods including flours made from multiple grains said the current generation has avoided traditional foods and instead moved to junk food which is sometimes harmful to one’s health.

Mr Paul Kiambi speaking to KNA from his head office in Meru town. Photo by Dickson Mwiti

“The current generation adores fast foods full of carcinogens that lead to some lifestyle diseases. It is high time that we got back to our traditional foods which are very critical in terms of boosting our bodies’ immunity,” said Mr Kiambi.

Mr Kiambi feels that cancer, which is one of the rampant diseases in Meru County can be tamed by the consistent use of indigenous foods including yams, arrowroots, whole grains, and cassava, among others.

“In the past, we never had many cases of cancer as we are experiencing now. This tells us that there is a problem with what we are consuming on a daily basis which we need to review immediately,” said Mr. Kiambi.

Mr. Kiambi says he started researching indigenous foods and vegetables about 20 years ago and has since come up with an industry at Katheri in Imenti Central where he processes and packages some of the foods for sale.

“Taking the right food into your body is healthy. If you don’t take food as medicine, then you will take medicine as food,” says Mr. Kiambi adding that the proper intake of food also eliminates other lifestyle diseases like Blood Pressure, Arthritis, H-pylori, Hypertension, and infertility among others.

Kiambi has been holding various seminars to sensitize people on the right food to take especially those that have nutritional and medicinal value as well as those that boost one’s immunity against diseases.

“Many people get some diseases due to lack of knowledge on the right foods to take and this is why I have been working day and night to see what we can do to save the situation,” said Mr. Kiambi emphasizing the need to get back to the traditional foods.

Mr. Kiambi adds that despite convincing people about the food to take, there has been a shortage of these foods and this has prompted him to come up with a technology of preserving the little that is available in seasons for use in the future.

He has since come up with a company known as ICOBO which has also employed about five people who help him in the packaging and distribution of these foods to those in need of them and even to the nearby supermarkets.

By Dickson Mwiti

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