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Nutrition

Nutrition (9)

Price of garri, a staple in the country, has dropped by more than 60 per cent in Enugu within four months. A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), who conducted a market survey on the staple on Monday, observed that the price has gone down from as high as N1, 250 to between N450 and N500 per paint bucket. The paint bucket of four-litre is usually the standard measure for cereals in South East. Many buyers, who came to purchase the staple in markets in Enugu, said they were happy as they could get white garri for N450 and yellow garri for N500. A buyer, who spoke to NAN, said that they prayed the price could crash further, while another said it should continue at its current price. The traders attributed the price crash to the current bumper harvest of cassava after many Nigerians had yielded the call to return to the farm. A garri seller at Garki Market, Mrs Obioma Ukoh, said that many people went into cassava farming since last year and for that its price had drastically dropped. “I pray that people will continue to plant cassava, this way there will be no reason to buy it as high as N1, 250 again,’’ she said. Mr James Ugwu, a teacher in one of the secondary schools in Enugu, also said that the low price was as a result of bumper harvest of cassava this year. Ugwu, who NAN met at Kenyatta Market, said that the price would not get higher anymore as everyone had learnt a lesson and many had gone back to farming. A corps member, Miss Ifeoma Ogbologu, who came for shopping at Akwata Market, said she was happy buying garri at the rate of N450, explaining that it was not easy when the price was N1, 250.

The World Health Organisation has revealed that 7,000 children die everyday. According to the organisation, every day in 2016, 15 000 children died before their fifth birthday, 46% of them – or 7 000 babies – died in the first 28 days of life, according to a new UN report. Levels and Trends in Child Mortality 2017, reveals that although the number of children dying before the age of five is at a new low– 5.6 million in 2016, compared with nearly 9.9 million in 2000 – the proportion of under-five deaths in the newborn period has increased from 41% to 46% during the same period. “The lives of 50 million children under-five have been saved since 2000, a testament to the serious commitment by governments and development partners to tackle preventable child deaths,” said UNICEF Chief of Health, Stefan Swartling Peterson. “But unless we do more to stop babies from dying the day they are born, or days after their birth, this progress will remain incomplete. We have the knowledge and technologies that are required – we just need to take them where they are most needed.” At current trends, 60 million children will die before their fifth birthday between 2017 and 2030, half of them newborns, according to the report released by UNICEF, the World Health Organization, the World Bank and the Population Division of UNDESA which make up the Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (IGME). Most newborn deaths occurred in two regions: Southern Asia (39%) and sub-Saharan Africa (38%). Five countries accounted for half of all new-born deaths: India (24%), Pakistan (10%), Nigeria (9%), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (4%) and Ethiopia (3%). “To achieve universal health coverage and ensure more newborns survive and thrive, we must serve marginalized families,” says Dr Flavia Bustreo, Assistant Director-General for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health at WHO. “To prevent illness, families require financial power, their voices to be heard and access to quality care. Improving quality of services and timely care during and after childbirth must be prioritized.” The report notes that many lives can be saved if global inequities are reduced. If all countries achieved the average mortality of high-income countries, 87% of under-five deaths could have been averted and almost 5 million lives could have been saved in 2016. “It is unconscionable that in 2017, pregnancy and child birth are still life-threatening conditions for women, and that 7 000 newborns die daily,” said Tim Evans, Senior Director of Health Nutrition and Population at the World Bank Group. “The best measure of success for Universal Health Coverage is that every mother should not only be able to access health care easily, but that it should be quality, affordable care that will ensure a healthy and productive life for her children and family. We are committed to scaling up our financing to support country demand in this area, including through innovative mechanisms like the Global Financing Facility (GFF). ” Pneumonia and diarrhea top the list of infectious diseases which claim the lives of millions of children under-five globally, accounting for 16% and 8% of deaths, respectively. Preterm birth complications and complications during labour or child birth were the causes of 30% of newborn deaths in 2016. In addition to the 5.6 million under-5 deaths, 2.6 million babies are stillborn each year, the majority of which could be prevented. Ending preventable child deaths can be achieved by improving access to skilled health-professionals during pregnancy and at the time of birth; lifesaving interventions, such as immunization, breastfeeding and inexpensive medicines; and increasing access to water and sanitation, that are currently beyond the reach of the world’s poorest communities. For the first time, mortality data for older children age 5 to 14 was included in the report, capturing other causes of death such as accidents and injuries. Approximately 1 million children aged 5 to 14 died in 2016. “This new report highlights the remarkable progress since 2000 in reducing mortality among children under age 5,” said UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Mr. LIU Zhenmin. “Despite this progress, large disparities in child survival still exist across regions and countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Yet many deaths at these ages are easily preventable through simple, cost-effective interventions administered before, during and immediately after birth. Reducing inequities and reaching the most vulnerable newborns, children and mothers are essential for achieving the SDG target on ending preventable childhood deaths and for ensuring that no one will be left behind.” The report also notes that: In sub-Saharan Africa, estimates show that 1 child in 36 dies in the first month, while in the world’s high income countries, the ratio is 1 in 333. Unless the rate of progress improves, more than 60 countries will miss the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) to end preventable deaths of newborns by 2030 and half would not meet the target of 12 neonatal deaths per 1,000 live births by 2050. These countries account for about 80% of neonatal deaths in 2016.

Every Woman Hope Centre (EWHC), an NGO, on Tuesday called on Nigerian scientists and all stakeholders to handle the issue of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) with scientifically proven information. The Executive Director of EWHC, Mrs Edel-Quinn Agbaegbu, made the call in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja. “We have been active in the promotion of proper regulatory process in the application of the technology in Nigeria, with the view to preventing any adverse effect on human health, animals, plants and the environment. “And there have been a lot of distortions, misrepresentation of facts and misconceptions in the information already dished out about GMOs and this is quite unfortunate; it is an embarrassing development in Nigeria. “Therefore, stakeholders should properly and effectively pass on their messages as regards the issues of biosafety foods as long as they are backed by credible scientific evidence,’’ she said. Agbaegbu noted that there were accusations and counter-accusations concerning GMOs but urged all parties to be professional and unbiased about their findings on the benefits or otherwise of GMOs. “ The world is moving to modern technology and Nigeria should not be an exception. Do we really wish to have a science-based society or should we let ourselves be governed by prejudices and misconceptions? “Some stakeholders like Health of Mother Earth Foundation, Women Environmental Programme and Initiative for Peace, Empowerment and Tolerance are calling for more scrutiny of the activities of National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) “For example, they are saying that the issuance of permit by NBMA to Monsanto Agricultural Nigeria Limited for confined field trials with genetically modified-insect/pest resistant NK603 and MON89034 X NK603 maize in Nigeria and commercial release into market of genetically modified-insect/pest resistant BT.cotton should be nullified. “And I ask again: Is the call based on scientific evidence that the health of Nigerians and the environment is in danger? Or is it an attempt to set Nigeria backward to the era of crude agriculture?’’ she asked. Anti-GMOs activists alleged that NBMA and Monsanto did not organise public hearings to seek the views of the public before the licence was granted and that the two agencies did not take into consideration the prevailing health and environmental concerns around GMOs. Agbaegbu said that EWHC was a key advocate of good governance which engaged in public enlightenment, advocacy and research activities. “From our findings, biotechnology or GM crops have been offered as a modern crop development tool to address the onslaught of pests and diseases, the vagaries of weather and other challenges facing growing crops. “It gives higher economic and yield benefits, freedom or reduced infestations from cotton bollworm or corn borer and dramatic reduction in pesticide use and frequency of spraying. “And the above factors motivated the adoption of GM cotton in three countries namely China, India and Philippines,’’ she added. Agbaegbu said that four countries in Europe — Spain, Portugal, Czech Republic and Slovakia — grew more than 136,000 hectares of biotech maize in 2016, an increase of 17 per cent from the 2015 figure; reflecting the need of the European Union (EU) for insect-resistant maize. “Also in 2016, Brazil increased its cultivation of biotech maize, soybeans, cotton and canola by a remarkable 11 per cent, maintaining its ranking as the second largest producer of biotech crops after the U.S. “In Brazil, biotech soybeans account for 32.7 million hectares, out of the 91.4 million hectares grown worldwide, and in 2016, a total of 26 countries, consisting of 19 developing countries and seven industrial countries, grew biotech crops.’’ Agbaegbu stressed that global development and sustainability issues nowadays were based on science. “Biotechnology is one of the tools necessary in helping farmers to grow more food on less land. “However, the promises of biotech crops can only be unlocked if farmers are able to buy and plant these crops, following a scientific approach to regulatory reviews and approvals. “Granted that our health and biodiversity are indeed our strength, all efforts should, therefore, be concentrated towards ensuring its adequate protection and preservation through effective biosafety regulations,’’ she said

A British man’s heart stopped after he accidentally swallowed a 6-inch long Dover sole on a fishing trip in Boscombe, in southern England. The man, 28, who was not named, went into cardiac arrest on Oct. 5 after the fish leapt into his mouth, completely blocking his throat. However, paramedics were able to clear his airway after drawing the sole free with a forceps. They saved his life. Matt Harrison, an emergency responder for the South Western Ambulance Service, said he was on the scene in less than two minutes. When he arrived on the dimly-lit pier where the man was fishing, a friend of the casualty was already performing CPR. The man’s friend, also not named, told Harrison he had jokingly placed a fish he had just caught over his mouth. The sole then wriggled free and jumped into the patient’s throat, causing a complete obstruction. “Initially we didn’t know the true extent of the situation or what the patient was choking on, but as we questioned them further we were told he had a whole fish stuck in his windpipe,” said Martyn Box, another paramedic who attended the incident. As the patient’s heart had already stopped, paramedics continued CPR. He was then artificially ventilated with a bag and mask, but his airway remained blocked and he wasn’t receiving any oxygen. The man began to deteriorate. Harrison said: “It was clear that we needed to get the fish out or this patient was not going to survive the short journey to the Royal Bournemouth Hospital. “I used a laryngoscope to fully extend the mouth and throat and saw what appeared like an altered colour of tissue in his throat. “Using a McGills forceps I was able to eventually dislodge the tip of the tail and very carefully, so as not to break the tail off I tried to remove it — although the fish’s barbs and gills were getting stuck on the way back up. “I was acutely aware that I only had one attempt at getting this right as if I lost grip or a piece broke off and it slid further out of sight then there was nothing more that we could have done to retrieve the obstruction.” After six attempts, the fish finally came out in one piece. To paramedic’s amazement, it was a whole Dover sole, measuring about 6 inches. Harrison said: “I have never attended a more bizarre incident and don’t think I ever will — but we’re all so glad the patient has no lasting effects from his cardiac arrest, which could so easily have had such a tragic and devastating outcome.” After the patient arrived at hospital, he was able to respond to some questions, and has since made a full recovery. Source :https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2017/10/13/british-man-accidentally-swallows-6-inch-dover-sole-fish/760772001/

Garcinia kola or in simple terms, bitter kola originated from West and Central Africa. Signifying the importance of this second largest continent, it produces many healing wonders for us. Garcinia kola belongs to the species of a tropical flowering plant. It produces brown, nut like seeds, similar looking to kidney beans. Medicinal benefits Lungs, the internal organ carry one of the most critical functions of the body. It helps us to breath. The considerate amount of regular consumption of the seed helps in strengthening the fibers and the lung tissue, stabilising any counter effects. It further assists in maintaining a good respiratory track and treats chest colds. It has a favorably high antioxidant content for a healthy body. So, if you are a smoker or even a passive smoker, definitely this is the ‘cure’. Treating malaria Kolaviron is an anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory phytochemical. Kolaviron is a major constituent of garcinia seed which helps in treating malaria. No wonder, the traditional healers suggest this for an easy and free cure, straight from the mother nature. There are no definite side effects of having this naturally occurring blissful plant. But, anything in excess or wrong proportion may show its evil side. On certain occasions, consumption of bitter kola is found to have some side effects. Irregular heartbeat Certain bodies might just prove allergic to the plant and develop certain reactions. In such cases, it is advisable to consult a doctor and stop use. Now we know that bitter kola is not actually bitter and has a sweet side which is healthy for us. Mavcure.com

People who skip breakfast or eat poorly to start the day are twice as likely to develop hardened arteries, which can lead to deadly heart disease, researchers said Monday. The study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology uncovered signs of damage to the arteries long before symptoms or disease developed. Researchers said their findings could offer an important tool in the fight against cardiovascular disease, the world’s top killer, which took 17.7 million lives in 2015, according to the World Health Organization. “People who regularly skip breakfast likely have an overall unhealthy lifestyle,” said study author Valentin Fuster, director of Mount Sinai Heart and editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. “This study provides evidence that this is one bad habit people can proactively change to reduce their risk for heart disease.” The report was based on 4,000 middle-aged office workers in Spain. Participants were followed for six years. About one in four ate a high-energy breakfast, which included 20 percent or more of the day’s calories. Most people in the study — 70 percent — ate a low-energy breakfast that gave them five to 20 percent of their daily calorie intake. Three percent said they skipped breakfast altogether or ate very little. This group “tended to have more generally unhealthy eating habits and a higher prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors,” said the report. People who skipped breakfast also “had the greatest waist circumference, body mass index, blood pressure, blood lipids and fasting glucose levels,” it said. Researchers used ultrasound technology to scan participants for signs of fatty deposits in the arteries, or early evidence of disease. They found that people who ate less than five percent of their recommended daily calories at breakfast had, on average, double the amount of fatty buildup in the arteries as people who ate a high-energy breakfast. This heightened risk of hardened arteries among people who skipped breakfast or ate little to start the day appeared independently of other factors, such as smoking, high cholesterol and physical inactivity. Previous studies have shown that eating a healthy breakfast is linked to good health, including a lower body weight, healthy diet, and lower risk of problems with cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes. Skipping breakfast has also previously been shown to raise the risk of coronary artery disease. According to Prakash Deedwania, professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco and author of an accompanying editorial in the journal, the study offers more evidence that skipping breakfast can be harmful to one’s health. “Although breakfast skippers are generally attempting to lose weight, they often end up eating more and unhealthy foods later in the day. Skipping breakfast can cause hormonal imbalances and alter circadian rhythms,” said Deedwania. “That breakfast is the most important meal of the day has been proven right in light of this evidence.”

An Abuja based herbal doctor, Dr Bamidele Joshua said the consumption of mango leaves helps in the treatment of kidney and gall stones among others. He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja that consumption of mango leaves also helps in the treatment of many health conditions. According to him, Mango leaves contain vitamins C, A and B as well as vital minerals such as Copper, Potassium and Magnesium. He explained that the leaves could be boiled to be taken as water or dried into powder form to be used in any food or drink. Joshua added that for medicinal purposes, the use of young and tender leaves was best for optimal benefits. The expert noted that the consumption of the leaves helps prevent and regulate diabetes, lowers blood pressure, fights restlessness and stops hiccups. “Mango leaves are very useful for managing diabetes. The tender leaves of the mango tree contain tannins called anthocyanidins that may help in treating early diabetes. “Soak the leaves in a cup of water overnight, strain and drink this water to help relieve the symptoms of diabetes. It also helps in treating hyperglycemia. “Mango leaves also help to lower blood pressure as they have hypotensive properties that helps in strengthening the blood vessels and treat the problem of varicose veins. “People suffering from restlessness due to anxiety, should add few mango leaves to their bathing water. This helps in relaxing and refreshing the body. “Daily intake of a finely grounded powder of mango leaves with water kept in a tumbler overnight helps in breaking kidney and gall bladder stones as well flush them out. “Put some mango leaves in warm water, close the container with a lid, and leave it overnight. Next morning filter the water and drink this concoction on an empty stomach. ‘’Regular intake of this infusion flushes out toxins from the body and keeps the stomach clean,” he said. He however enjoined patients with serious health challenge to seek medical advice before consumption. (NAN)

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