Prof. Tanimola Akande has urged federal and state governments to increase the number of environmental health inspectors to reduce the spread of Lassa fever.
The former President of Association of Public Health Physicians spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Lagos.
The expert said the incidence of Lassa fever in most states was worrisome and required concerted efforts.
Akande noted that inadequate health officials were not good for the country’s size.
Noting that population and numbers of houses have increased significantly, he said the health workforce was not commensurate.
“Quite a number of ailments are due to the poor environment. We need to have functional health inspectors that will go around houses as done in the 60s.
“Appropriate sanctions should also be given to those who aren’t keeping their environment clean”, the Prof. added.
Akande said health inspectors should extend their scope of focus beyond abattoirs and marketplaces for a more healthier environment.
He advised citizens to keep a safe environment, store food and dispose of remnants properly to prevent the breeding of rats.
“The way we dump refuse arbitrarily would encourage the breeding of rats, let’s encourage people to dispose of refuse appropriately”, the expert counselled.
Why Women Should Not Wear Underwear For More Than 24 Hours —Expert
A Medical Laboratory Scientist, Obinna Chukwudi, has cautioned women against wearing underwear for more than 24 hours if they want to maintain good feminine hygiene.
The microbiologist who works at the Department of Microbiology, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, Anambra State, said the discharge and moisture buildup from the underwear provides a breeding ground for bacteria, and yeast infections contaminated with faecal and urine matter.
Speaking in an interview with PUNCH HealthWise, Chukwudi said the accumulated discharge and moisture can lead to a lingering foul odour and a change in vagina pH level.
According to him, “underwear should not be worn for more than 24 hours. If a woman wears a pant for more than 24 hours, what happens is that the bacteria must have accumulated over time because of the sweat and other secretions coming out, which you don’t usually see, and that is why over time you begin to see underwear changing colour – sometimes white and sometimes grey.
“The secretions stay there over time and if you do not wash it off after the 24 hours, the woman could develop infections. Again, there could be a change in vaginal pH, because of the secretions being produced which could lead to vaginosis.”
Experts say a normal vaginal pH level is between 3.8 and 4.5, which is moderately acidic.
According to them, an acidic vaginal environment creates a barrier that prevents unhealthy bacteria and yeast from multiplying and causing infection; but a high vaginal pH level — above 4.5 — provides an environment for unhealthy bacteria to grow.
Bacterial vaginosis is a type of vaginal inflammation caused by the overgrowth of bacteria naturally found in the vagina, which upsets the natural balance. Though many women with this condition have no signs and symptoms, experts say some signs and symptoms include thin, gray, white, or green vaginal discharge, foul-smelling ‘fishy’ vaginal odour, vaginal itching, and burning during urination. Many women with bacterial vaginosis, however, have no signs or symptoms.
According to an online health portal, Mayo Clinic – a medical center focused on integrated health care, education, and research – bacterial vaginosis results from an overgrowth of one of several bacteria naturally found in the vaginal.
“Usually, ‘good’ bacteria (lactobacilli) outnumber ‘bad’ bacteria (anaerobes). But, if there are too many anaerobic bacteria, they upset the natural balance of microorganisms in the vagina and cause bacterial vaginosis,” Mayo Clinic noted.
Continuing, Chukwudi said “vaginosis can cause discomfort and they can experience odour coming from the private part.
“For the men, you could pardon them because the penis is not in direct contact most of the time and the opening is not wide enough to have enough loads of bacteria. But ideally, underwear should not be worn for more than 24 hours.”
Eat Enough Of This Nutrient To Lower Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Eating a healthy, balanced diet that provides all the essential nutrients in appropriate quantities is crucial to preventing and managing type 2 diabetes. While all nutrients contribute to health, some are superior to others for regulating blood sugar, and magnesium is one such nutrient.
Magnesium is the fourth most common mineral in the body after calcium, sodium, and potassium. Your body needs it for more than 300 chemical reactions, including making protein, producing energy, regulating blood pressure, and of course, controlling blood sugar. Magnesium controls blood sugar by making the cells in your body more sensitive to insulin and promoting insulin secretion from the beta cells in the pancreases
If you are deficient or don’t eat enough magnesium, the cells in your body are less able to absorb glucose from your bloodstream, your pancreas produces insufficient insulin, and insulin is less able to do its job, that is, removing excess glucose from the blood. All these factors lead to insulin resistance, a key player in type 2 diabetes. Many studies support magnesium’s role by showing that people with diabetes have lower magnesium levels than people without diabetes.
The daily recommended dietary intake (RDI) for magnesium is 420mg for men and 320mg for women, and you can easily get this by eating a wide range of plant foods. Magnesium is abundant in green leafy vegetables such as waterleaf, efo, afang, and hot leaf (uziza). It is also present in nuts and seeds, including almonds, cashews, sesame seeds (benniseed), sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
Unrefined grains (brown rice, ofada rice, steel-cut oats) are a source of magnesium but refined and processed grains such as white rice, have lost up to 97% of their magnesium, making them poor sources. For this reason, it is better to rely on vegetables, fruits (bananas, pawpaw, guava, grapefruit), legumes (beans, lentils and peas), nuts and seeds for magnesium if you eat a lot of refined grains. It is also vital to reduce your alcohol, caffeine and sugar intake because they deplete the body’s magnesium stores.
Finally, it is best to get magnesium from food because unlike supplements, your body can easily remove excess. Excess magnesium intake from supplements can cause diarrhoea, low blood pressure, muscle weakness, confusion and poor kidney function. If you choose to use a supplement, take no more than 350mg daily.
Cardiovascular Diseases: CSOs, Journalists Launch Action Against Trans-Fat
A two-day training has ended in Enugu, with journalists and members of the Civil Society Organizations, CSOs, launching a detailed action against Trans-Fat.
At the training, it was harped that Trans-Fat remains a major cause of cardiovascular diseases.
It was then agreed to sustain current advocacy against industrial Trans-Fat Acids (TFAs) oils to check the spate of cardiovascular diseases.
In his opening speech at the training, the Enugu State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Ikechukwu Obi, commended the organizers, Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA), for putting in place the Journalism Training on Trans-Fat Reporting.
Obi noted that journalists were critical stakeholders in health education and awareness, adding that they must ensure they get correct, factual and understandable health information that would benefit the public.
According to him, journalists should not allow medical professional becloud them with lots of technical health terminologies, but always learn to ask them to break the words in simple ordinary language meant for understanding of the layman.
“Journalists should try as much as possible to simplify medical terms for clear understanding of the layman. Accurate information passed in an easily understandable language will ensure that misconceptions and misinterpretation are checked in health reporting,” he said.
On the need to stop use of TFAs oils, the commissioner said that the citizens of the country have to be mindful of what they eat and check fatty and oil intakes to stem the tide of cardiovascular diseases in the country.
Obi, however, lauded NAFDAC for coming out with a draft regulation to check the use and consumption industrial TFAs in the country.
The commissioner assured journalists and other stakeholders in the fight against TFAs of collaboration to ensure that “we conquer, as we have done in Ebola, polio and other diseases”.
He said that the state was committed to working with NAFDAC, CAPPA and others in safe-guarding the health of all Nigerians.
Earlier, the Executive Director of CAPPA, Mr Olufemi Akinbode, said that the workshop was meant to x-ray the dangers of TFAs as well as equipping journalists with necessary knowledge and stakeholders’ contacts that would help enrich their reportage.
According to Akinbode, “we want journalists to use their media advocacy and awareness to influence policy makers and government regulators on making laws and health regulations to check the industrial TFAs.
“Journalists are expected to use their reportage to create awareness of the dangers of TFAs on the people and we achieve appreciable reduction in use of TFAs oil in our meals so that our people will remain healthy,” he said.
Dr Jerome Mafeni, Technical Director on TFAs with Network for Health Equity and Development, lauded CAPPA and its partners on the sustenance of the advocacy against TFAs, as well as for mobilizing the media to join actively in the fight.
Mrs Joy Amafah, Nigeria in-Country Coordinator of Global Health Advocacy Incubator (GHAI), noted that there was no way you can run a successful campaign meant to influence the attitude of the public without using the media.
“I look forward for a successful engagement and outcome on TFAs education and advocacy,” Amafah said.
DAILY POST reports that the two-day workshop was attended by journalists from across the South-East States.
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