A Paediatrician and Vice President of the Paediatric Society of Ghana, Dr. Hilda Mantebea Boye, has said that the best way to benefit from the fruits one takes in is not to drink, but to eat them, thereby avoiding all the unnatural juice and drinks.
She said this is because the essence of the fiber in the fruits is maximally achieved when the fruit is eaten and not drunk as some people do.
“It is also better to eat your fruits than to drink because when you eat the fruits, you have all the fiber in there and you are able to get the benefit of the fiber as well. The smoothie is good because it has the fiber in there as well”, she stated.
Speaking on the topic, ‘Childhood Obesity’ on GTV Breakfast Show Health Segment, February 10, 2022, the Paediatrician stated that, as much as eating too much could contribute to childhood obesity, there are several others that matter. These include poor food choices, gestational diabetes and down syndrome.
“It could be because of poor choices when it comes to the diet. You are what you eat, and so if you are eating bad food, the bad food is going to cause you to gain more and more. So basically, poor choices, when it comes to the diet is one major cause,” she stated.
She added that a couple of things are taken into consideration to calculate the obesity of a person.
“If you want to talk about obesity, to be objective, you need to know the sex of the person and the height of the person, especially for children and the weight. So, you compute the Body Max Index (BMI) and you put it on the chart. Once you put it on the chart if it falls within the overweight range, you will know. For adults or older people, you can use the cut-offs for the BMI where less than 18.5 is too small or underweight, and between 18.5 and less than 25, that’s like normal,25 to 29.9, that’s overweight and 30 and above is obese,” she explained.
Dr. Hilda Mantebea Boye entreated schools to work closely with parents to provide pupils with the right food and amount of nutrients. She added that fruits and vegetables should be an essential part of the meals.
“Now the first thing will be the food because you are what you eat and that has a great impact on your weight. There is a big opportunity for the school to provide the children with the right kind of food that they need to eat to grow. So they should avoid serving the children junk food. They should serve them with food that is nutritious and well balanced,” she noted.
She further advised families to get involved in handling obesity, engage in physical exercises and take advantage of the existing help avenues in order to manage the disease.
“Managing obesity is something that is a family responsibility…There should be a good activity, physical activity for the children and seek help in the hospital,” she added.