A nutritional biochemist, Dr Ochuko Erukainure, has said that the consumption of tiger nuts could prevent and help in the management of heart attack, constipation and diabetes.
Erukainure, who is also a Senior Research Officer at the Federal Institute of Industrial Research (FIIRO), Oshodi, Lagos told newsmen in Lagos that the nuts contain high fibre which he said helps the, body by providing simple relief of constipation and also keeps the eater fuller, longer as well as aids in weight loss.
Erukainure said that the fibre content was higher than other suggested sources of fibre such as oat bran, rice bran, peaches, cabbage, pears, apple, carrot and chia seeds.
“Tiger nuts are not actually a nut, but a small tuber, which is high in fibre, protein and natural sugars.
“Tiger nuts are very healthy which can help to prevent thrombosis and activate blood circulation and its very high fibre content combined with a delicious taste, make them ideal for healthy eating.
“Tiger nuts give a heating and drying action to the digestive system in general and this gives it the potency to alleviate flatulence,” he said.
According to him, tiger nuts are also high in calcium which is a bone building and growth supporting mineral.
He said that with only 100 grammes of tiger nuts, the body would get 13 to 17 per cent of daily recommended dose of magnesium.
“This mineral stays active in the body and participates in more than 300 biochemical reactions of our chemical.
“Tiger nuts are high in amino acids with arginine, while arginine has shown to aid in conditions that are caused or made worse by restricted blood vessels such as chest pain and erectile dysfunction.
“Tiger nuts are also rich in vitamin E and protect the eater from harmful free radicals which are responsible for the death of the body cells.
“Antioxidants help the body to protect itself from free radicals, molecules that have an unshared electron.
“The unshared electron can react with oxygen to form reactive oxygen species, which are damaging to our bodies.
“Vitamin E combined with high levels of oleic acid, two components of tiger nuts, has also been shown to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease,” the expert said.
He also said that the oil extracted from tiger nuts contains only 18 per cent saturated fat and 82 per cent unsaturated fats and stressed the need for its daily consumption.
Immunization: Health Board Targets Rural Communities
Towards ensuring that immunization campaign achieves its target of over 90 percent, the Rivers State Primary Health Care Management Board, says it has provided modalities for trained health care providers to reach the interiors of the state.
Making this known in an exclusive interview, the Health Education / Coordinator, Rivers State Social and Behavioural Change Communication Committee, Dr Daris Nria, said provisions have been made to take the free immunisation exercise to the rural areas of the state.
Because immunisation programe will be running concurrently in all the local government areas, and these areas will be empowered with boats or other means of transport, as well as logistics.
She used this opportunity to call on the public especially parents and women of child bearing age to avail themselves the opportunity of being immunized against tetanus and other diseases.
In another development, the Maternal and Neonatal Child Health (MNCH) Focal Person, Rivers State Primary Healthcare Management Board, Dr Emen-Jaja stated that the MNCH week slated to commence from 20th – 24th September will provide health care services for children under the age of five years, pregnant women as well as their spouses.
Such services, according to her, include administration of vitamin A, deworming exercise, nutritional screening, general health checks, child spacing and birth registration.
“Both women of reproductive age and their spouses who visit the health care centres would also have free services within the week.
CSO Wants Cancer Treatment Centres In Rivers
The Rivers State Chapter of the Civil Society organsation (CSO) has called on the state government to establish cancer treatment centres in the state to address the current growing cancer cases in the state.
Making the call recently, chairman of the organisation, Mr Dennis Otobo, said going by the status among the community of states in the country, Rivers State needs such centres in strategic areas of the state.
He stated that “going by the position of Rivers State among other states in the country, we are over due to have enough cancer treatment centres, especially considering the State Government’s focus on the health of her people”.
According to him, “taking some of our cancer patients to other neighbouring states does not tell well of our health services, no matter how we look at it.
“Government should establish cancer treatment centres in the state, at least a one hub treatment centre in each LGA”, he said.
Otobo explained that for now, about 99 per cent of treatments for cancer and related services are provided by donor agencies and patients are taken outside the state for treatment, which requires a lot of fund that is mostly not available.
“If government can provide cancer treatment centres in the state, it will not only lessen the impact of the ailment in the state but will also alleviate the suffering of patients who cannot afford going for treatment outside the state”, he said.
To Much Salt Consumption, Bad For Kidney – Expert
A Nephrologist, specialist in Kidney disease, Dr Manda David-West, says excessive salt consumption is one key cause of kidney disease.
Stating this in a recent interview, she said in-take of too much salt is capable of damaging one’s kidney, in addition to raising blood pressure.
“Too much salt can raise up the Blood Pressure (BP), and once the BP is raised, if you are not on medication, It can damage the kidney over time, she said.
In order to prevent this, Dr David West, who is a Consultant Nephrologist at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH) called for limitation in salt in-take.
She further stated that to prevent kidney disease, there was the need to cut down on carbohydrate and callory intake, alongside checking food in-take capable of increasing chances of developing diabetes mellitus.
Dr David West continued that enough intake of fruits and vegetables, alongside exercises with a view to keep fit also prevents kidney diseases.
Contrary to wide spread belief that food supplements are good for the body, Dr David West said too much intake of food supplements is not good for the body.
Accroding to her, besides taking fruits and vegetables, “they should engage in daily exercise, try and keep fit and be active as much.
“Even (food) supplement has not been proven to be good to the kidney, especially when it is taken for a long time.
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