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Healthy lifestyle key in fighting non-communicable diseases

Following increasing cases of non-communicable diseases in Murang’a County, residents have been urged to adopt active lifestyles and eat healthy foods to avoid and manage lifestyle diseases.

Speaking to KNA in her office, Murang’a County Nutrition Coordinator Nancy Mwangi confirmed that many of the lifestyle diseases affecting large number of people could be prevented and managed through physical exercise and good nutrition

Mwangi encouraged local residents to be thoughtful on their diets and take part in physical activities such as walking.

She urged people to walk over short distances so as to take at least 1000 steps as a physical activity that could make their bodies active. “You can engage in simple activities at no cost which include walking or even running and also doing house chores,” Mwangi said.

She also urged residents to avoid sedentary activities which involved a lot of sitting and encouraged them to participate in activities such as walking, cycling and swimming at their leisure time.

“Minimize on the use of motorized transportation, and sitting in the same position for long hours,” she said, adding that those who do office duties that entailed sitting the whole day should take a walk in between the breaks in the business environment.

“One is encouraged to do 150 minutes of moderate physical activity throughout the week,” she stated. She also noted the food people consumed was also contributing to high rates of lifestyle diseases.

“Most individuals rely on processed food because of its availability and affordability unlike before where we used to take non-processed foods,” she said while urging people to choose healthy foods.

“What we consume will determine who we will be. We can end up obese or even at risk of contracting diseases,” she added.

Mwangi recommended that people should eat plenty of vegetables and fruits every day and also eat a balanced diet that includes protein, vitamins and carbohydrates.

“Even while the food is healthy, portions are important, do not eat more than your body needs,” she cautioned. She also noted that individuals should limit the consumption of sweetened foods and drinks.

Mwangi encouraged those who are in a position to utilize gym amenities to visit the facilities occasionally and involve themselves in activities that would help burn excess calories.

By Purity Mugo and Justine Nafula

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