VOICES PUSHPESH PANT ANAND NEELAKANTAN RAVI SHANKAR PRAKASH SINGH SHINIE ANTONY MATA AMRITANANDAMAYI THE NEW SUNDAY EXPRESS BUFFET MAGAZINE PEOPLE WELLNESS BOOKS FOOD ART & CULTURE ENTERTAINMENT SEPTEMBER 8 2019 SUNDAY PAGES 12 The Unﬁt Indian Now that Fitness India has been kicked off, urgent action is needed at both government and private sector levels to make citizens healthy and productive I By ANU JAIN ROHTAGI ndians are unfit. Full stop. They are unfit in the workplace, in public and at home. The 2018 Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) State-Level Disease Burden Initiative, India: Health of the Nation’s States, reports that the estimated proportion of all deaths due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is up from over 37 percent in 1990 to 61 percent in 2016. About 60.4 percent of respondents have never ever had their blood pressure checked. Almost 1.73 million Indians will get cancer next year. Breast cancer has gone up by 39.1 percent between 1990 and 2016. The report also says cardiovascular diseases increased by 34.3 percent in the same period. Says Dr Upendra Kaul, chairman of cardiology unit, Batra Hospital, Delhi, “It’s shocking that the maximum number of patients aged 25-45 admitted to the Emergency Ward have sedentary lifestyles.” Take 20-year-old Rohan who came to the hospital for bariatric surgery; his weight was 165 kg. He had severe sleep apnea along with a pre-diabetic condition and hypertension. Doctors blamed his odd sleeping hours, poor eating habits, and not working out. “Rohan was operated and gradually his weight came down from 165 to 90 kg. His sugar level and BP were also controlled,” says Dr Pradeep Chowbey, Chairman, Minimal and Bariatric Surgery, Max Hospital, Delhi. Dr Kaul is worried that the number of young candidates for bariatric surgery has gone up exponentially In the . last five years, 65 percent of obese patients were between 18 and 40 years old. Last week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the ‘Fit India Movement’ to take the country towards a healthier future. He faces a challenge that is easier said than done. Do the math. WHO study: 34 percent of Indians are too lazy to stay healthy . Fitness discovery platform Gympik study: 52 percent people between 20-35 of age in five major metropolitan cities have no time to exercise. A market intelligence survey: Approximately 64 percent of Indians do not exercise. ICMR study: 33 percent of urban men and 44 percent of urban women are either overweight or obese. World Obesity Federation: India will have 48.3 million obese people by 2025. Paediatric Obesity report: By 2025 there will be 17 million obese children in the country . WHO: India is the most depressed FIND TIME A study by Gympik, a fitness discovery platform based out of Bengaluru, says MOST INDIANS DO NOT FIND TIME TO EXERCISE. The fitness survey based on the responses of 1.06 million people, mainly in the age group of 20-35 years, in Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Hyderabad, reveals that 52 percent do not find time to exercise, while 36 percent lack the motivation to join a fitness centre. In fact, 14 percent claim to be absolutely clueless about where to begin their fitness journey from. The WHO guidelines suggests CHILDREN AGED 5-17 SHOULD WORKOUT AT LEAST 60 MINUTES EVERY DAY to improve metabolic health biomarkers, muscular fitness, cardio-respiratory bone strength and cardiovascular parameters. country in the world followed by China and America. Scary . India badly needs a magical ‘Fitness Mantra’. “India is such a huge country and a mixed bucket of fit and unfit people. Without an adequate health policy and programme, more deaths are occurring in India from NCDs than communicable ones,” adds Dr Kaul. NCD IS THE BAD BOY: The WHO has criticised unhealthy diet and poor physical activity as the main reasons for the staggering increase in BP blood sugar, elevated blood , lipids and obesity in Indians. The Global Burden of Disease Study reveals that NCD is responsible for 60 percent of total deaths in India. Of these, 26 percent deaths are cardiovascular-related. Dr A Sreenivas Kumar, Director, Cardiology and Research, Apollo Hospital, Hyderabad, says that most lifestyle-related diseases are preventable or can be delayed by consuming nutritional food, avoiding junk food and fatty-preservative eatables, adopting regular workout routines such as yoga, aerobics and even a good walk. “But unfortunately these have disappeared from our daily routine,” he laments. The consequences are visible. Forty-nine percent Indians are diabetic. Diabetics are recommended regular exercise to keep the disease in check. According to a 2017 ICMR report, 64 percent of diabetics in India were diagnosed only in the past 25 years. Their number will double by 2025. Experts feel the Fit India Movement will face many hurdles, the main among which are a policy crisis and lack of awareness behind rising lifestyle disorders and NCDs. NO KIDDING: Rising child obesity is endangering the country’s future. As per the National Health Portal of India (NHP), children are not going out of the house to play Instead, . they have become couch potatoes or play computer games. Few walk or cycle to school, which are illequipped to provide proper physical education. “Sparse awareness programmes and strategies, low vaccination rates and unavailability of basic amenities and a hygiene crisis, communicable diseases such as malaria, pneumonia, dengue fever, hepatitis, tuberculosis have become a menace in India,” says Dr KK Agarwal, Senior Medicine Consultant and President of Heart Care Foundation of India. He warns of rising antibiotic resistance that must be checked “if we have to meet the ‘Fit India’ goal”. STEP UP, PLEASE: Experts say that most health agencies have failed to improve or enhance health facilities in India. The government is also behind in achieving its healthcare goals in terms of accessibility and quality The Global Burden of . Disease Study records that Sri Lanka and Bangladesh have bettered India in meeting health goals, “It is high time we realise that Indians are unfit,” says Dr Anoop Misra, chairman, Fortis-C-DOC, Centre for Diabetes, Metabolic Diseases and Endocrinology Delhi. , Health infrastructure in the country cannot cope with the countless patients filling up hospitals. There is no official fitness policy Poverty . and illiteracy are further deterrents to prevention programmes. The ICMR study on obesity further reveals that in rural areas, 12 percent men and 15 percent women are overweight or obese. Almost 20 percent Indians are undernourished. “Obesity leads to many chronic conditions. Combating the escalating epidemic of coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke, diabetes and other diseases needs action through various channels of fitness,” says Dr Hemalatha, Director, National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad. NUTRITION MATTERS: Apart from Fit India Movement, the government has put in place a few public fitness initiatives. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has urged industries and restaurants to voluntarily pledge to reduce the percentage of salt, sugar and fat content in their products. Edible oil industries have promised to reduce trans-fat by 2 percent by 2022. Experts are in favour of making ‘Eat Right’ a regulation instead of a voluntary activity . ‘Harm Reduction Strategy’ patients include foods of different colours such as vegetables, nuts, pluses, fish, and dairy in their daily diet. Quality of workout is another fitness parameter but the shrinking open and secure spaces such as parks, playgrounds, walking routes and cycling tracks are forcing people to stay indoors. A study by a market intelligence agency among 3,000 adults above 18 reveals that approximately 64 percent of Indians do not exercise in gyms though almost 46 percent believe in a healthy lifestyle. Indians are into simple exercises; Turn to page 2 CRUNCH IT For complete fitness, MEN AND WOMEN SHOULD MAINTAIN A BMI OF 18.5 TO 23 (body weight in kg/ht in m2) and a waistline of less than 85 and 80 cm for men and women respectively. As for diet, rich sources of minerals, vitamins and polyphenols are essential, for which intake of 500 gm of fresh vegetables and fruits and regular intake of FEW GRAMS OF NUTS AND SEEDS are required to keep oneself fit and healthy.
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