The Giving Capsules: Don’t neglect your health this 21st Century


Baptista is a Hybrid Professional and the Executive Director of ProHumane Afrique International.  ProHumane is a charitable, development & think thank organization working with communities & individuals to create sustainable solutions to transform communities through diverse pro-poor initiatives. Pro-poor initiatives are initiatives that help to alleviate poverty. Baptista is a realist, affable, simple and humane. You can reach her via e-mail on [email protected]  and follow this conversation on all our social media sites: Linked-In/ Twitter/ Facebook/ Instagram: ProHumane Afrique International.  Call or WhatsApp: +233(0)262213313. Hashtag: #behumane #thegivingcapsules #prohumaneafriqueint  #fowc

“To keep the body in good health is a duty…otherwise we shall not be able to keep the mind strong and clear” – unknown

Whose duty is it to take care of you? You have a personal responsibility to take good care of yourself. To neglect is to fail to care for properly. Neglect is a form of abuse where the perpetrator, who is responsible for caring for someone who is unable to care for themselves, fails to do so. So if you fail to care for yourself, you are neglecting yourself. To neglect is to not give enough care or attention to people or things that are your responsibility.  It can be a result of carelessness, ignorance or unwillingness. Let’s not make work, festivity, and other things prevent us from taking good care of ourselves. Be careful, covid-19 will expose you if you have a weak immune system.

How can we manage as a people – hitherto there was the locust swarm infestation in Africa, then covid-19 a global pandemic and now we hear of the outbreak of Ebola again of which Guinea  has recorded 7 cases and three deaths as at today according to the Ghana Health Services update on Ebola. The new economy reports “while the start of the year saw COVID-19 send panic across the globe, another crisis was brewing in East Africa. From December 2019 to spring 2020, a plague of locusts – the largest the region had seen in generations – swept across the region, from the Horn of Africa to the deserts of Kenya, decimating the crops that feed tens of millions of people. Kenya hadn’t faced a plague this severe in over 70 years, and Ethiopia and Somalia not in a quarter of a century”.

Let’s discuss what neglect does to us. Neglect can severely alter the way we do things or work. This can lead to an increased risk of depression in later life as well as other disorders and memory impairments. Neglect can cause us to develop some lifestyle diseases which hitherto can be prevented if we were taking good care of ourselves.

When we neglect our health, it means we do not take time to eat very well and appropriately. This situation can cause a lot of harm to our bodies.  What foods do you usually consume? According to Dr. Sebi, we need to eat foods that are grown and natural avoiding unwholesome foods. Please try to avoid carbonated drinks if at all possible and result to the use of organic natural foods and drinks if you can as you are what you eat. There are several types and forms of neglect; physical neglect, educational, emotional and medical neglect among others are all form of neglect we need to be mindful of.

We do not need to pay close attention to our physical bodies, educational needs and other forms of neglect only . What goes into our system is equally very important and contributes to our good health. If we do not have good health, we cannot live to do anything. Your passport to longevity is your good health. Demonstrating that clearly with available data from the New York City health via websites, many people dying out of the covid-19 pandemic can be attributed to underlying conditions such as diabetes, lung disease, cancer, immunodeficiency, heart disease, hypertension, asthma, kidney disease and gall liver diseases among others.  Out of the sampled 15, 230 deaths cases recorded earlier in May 2020, 75% amounting 11, 370 deaths were attributed to deaths occurring due to underlying health conditions, 99 deaths representing 0.7% occurred without underlying conditions. 1, 551 representing 24.7 % occurred as a result of unknown factors. This statistics isn’t available currently for Ghana. We will appreciate you sharing if you chance of any such data


The Global Burden of Disease Study is the most authoritative assessment of how people are dying in every country in the world. According to this report, “The food we are eat is putting 11 million of us into an early grave each year, this influential study shows. The analysis, in the Lancet, found that our daily diet is a bigger killer than smoking and is now involved in one in five deaths around the world prior to covid-19 outbreak.

Salt – whether in bread, soy sauce or processed meals – shortened the highest number of lives. Limit your salt intake from today. Researchers say this study is not about obesity as we already know, but “poor quality” diets damaging hearts and causing cancer. Please limit the fast food, fizzy drinks and eat properly. There are several healthy options for juice and smoothie like Hibiscus ( Sobolo/ Bissap Drink for instance. Healthline has it that, “Hibiscus flowers come in many colors. They can be red, yellow, white, or peach-colored, and can be as big as 6 inches wide. The most popular variety is Hibiscus sabdariffa. The red flowers of this variety are most commonly cultivated for medical purposes, and are available as dietary supplements.

Hibiscus tea, also called sour tea because of its tart taste, is made from a mixture of dried hibiscus flowers, leaves, and dark red calyces (the cup-shaped centers of the flowers). After the flower finishes blooming, the petals fall off and the calyces turn into pods. These hold the plant’s seeds. Calyces are often the main ingredients in herbal drinks containing hibiscus.

Hibiscus has been used by different cultures as a remedy for several conditions. Egyptians used hibiscus tea to lower body temperature, treat heart and nerve diseases, and as a diuretic to increase urine production. In Africa, tea was used to treat constipation, cancer, liver disease, and cold symptoms. Pulp made from the leaves was applied to the skin to heal wounds. In Iran, drinking sour tea is still a common treatment for high blood pressure. Today, hibiscus is popular for its potential to reduce high blood pressure. Modern studies show promise for both the tea and hibiscus plant extract to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Although more research is still needed, this could be good news for the future of heart disease treatment. Hibiscus shows potential for cancer treatment and as a weight loss aid, along with other uses. There aren’t many studies in these areas, but some research trusted source suggests that anthocyanin’s may hold the key to hibiscus’ anticancer properties.

According to the burden of diseases reports, the latest analysis used estimates of countries’ eating habits to pin down how often diet was shortening lives. The dangerous diets were those containing:

  • Too much salt – three million deaths
  • Too few whole grains – three million deaths
  • Too little fruit – two million deaths
  • Low levels of nuts, seeds, vegetables, omega-3 from seafood and fiber were the other major killers.

“We find that diet is one of the dominant drivers of health around the world, it’s really quite profound. How is this neglect killing us all? About 10 million out of the 11 million diet-related deaths were because of cardiovascular disease and that explains why salt is such a problem. Too much salt raises blood pressure and that in turn raises the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Salt can also have a direct effect on the heart and blood vessels, leading to heart failure when the organ does not work effectively.

Whole grains, fruit and vegetables have the opposite effect – they are “cardio-protective” and lower the risk of heart problems. This chart demonstrates how far off we are an optimal diet as a people according to the Lancet.

On Nuts and seeds; the healthy foods missing from the most diets around the world were nuts and seeds, according to the study. Prof Nita Forouhi, from the University of Cambridge, said: “The perception is they are little packs of energy that will make you fat, whereas they are packed full of good fats. “And most people don’t see them as mainstream food; and the other issue is cost.” The huge fat versus sugar debate and the link between red and processed meats with cancer have attracted huge headlines in recent years. These can be harmful as we show, but they are much smaller issues than low whole grains, fruit, nuts, seeds and vegetable intake,” said Prof Murray. Although, the study did show too many fizzy drinks were being drunk in every corner of the world. The researchers say it is time for health campaigns to switch from talking about nutrients like fat and sugar and instead promote healthy foods. Bad diets are knocking a couple of years off life expectancies around the world, according to the researchers. But Prof Murray warns this is just the average and says the real question we should be asking is: “Am I going to die in my 50s from a heart attack? Or am I going to have some of the diet-related cancers in my 40s?“ so we advise, don’t neglect your health this 21st century and beyond.

The UK is behind countries like France, Denmark and Belgium. The biggest problems are a lack of whole grains, fruit, vegetables and nuts and seeds. The study estimates 14% of UK deaths prior to covid-19 are related to diet, with 127 diet-related deaths per 100,000 people a year. Japan and China have curiously contrasting fortunes that reflect their changing relationship with salt. China consumes enormous amounts of salt with soy and other salty sauces being a key part of the country’s cuisine. But the rising popularity of processed foods is introducing yet more salt to their diet. It has the highest death rate because of salt of any country. “Japan is very interesting because if you go back 30 to 40 years, they like China today had enormous salt intake. “Salt is still their number one problem, but it has come down dramatically, “And they have a diet that is higher in many of the things we think are protective for heart disease such as vegetables and fruit.” Mediterranean countries, particularly France, Spain and Israel, have some of the lowest numbers of diet-related deaths in the world. Countries in South East, Southern and Central Asia are at the opposite end of the spectrum. Israel has the lowest diet-related deaths – 89 per 100,000 people a year. Uzbekistan has the highest diet-related deaths – 892 per 100,000 people a year.

Diet quality matters no matter what weight you are. “The really big story for people to act on is increase your whole grains, fruit, nuts, seeds and vegetable intake and reduce salt if you can.” But money is an issue. It is estimated that having your five fruit and veg a day would take up 52% of household income in poorer countries. But Prof Forouhi warns: “The public can make healthier choices if informed and have the resources, but if what is on the shelves as buy-one-get-one-free is always unhealthy, then that message will fall down. Cheaper options that are healthy are badly needed.

Don’t neglect your own or families health this 21st century and beyond. As per research, a stronger immunity going forward will be your passport to longevity.

 “The zookeeper doesn’t feed the gorilla the food of the polar bear, am I right? So how come we eat the food of everybody?” – Dr. Sebi 

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