#Jamaica, October 31, 2017 – Montego Bay – Minster of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton is advising Jamaicans to get regular health checks, whether or not they are seeing signs and symptoms of illness.
“Remember now, you don’t have to be sick to go to your doctor. That’s what a lot of Jamaicans do, but then by that time it is too late. So, you must know your health status from early so that your doctor can say to you ‘boy your blood pressure is a little bit too high, cut out the salt’, or ‘you are overweight for your body and your age so cut out the sugar and the fats’ – that sort of thing,” he said.
“Once you know your health status, then you will know how to live in order to remain healthy and to have longer and better living,” he pointed out.
The Minister’s words of advice came during his address to residents of Black River, who had congregated in the town square on, Friday (October 27) for the Jamaica Moves road show. He re-emphasised the need for Jamaicans to engage in physical activity in order to prevent and combat non-communicable diseases (NCDs), also called lifestyle diseases, such as diabetes, hypertension and obesity.
“A lot of Jamaicans are dying because of lifestyle diseases, meaning diseases you get from what you eat and physical inactivity – a lack of exercise. So what the Ministry of Health has done is to develop this programme called Jamaica Moves, which is taking you around the country, that is firstly encouraging all Jamaicans to know their health status, to do their check-ups,” he explained. Dr. Tufton said as Minister of Health, he has been trying to lead by example.
“You notice that I have shed a few pounds because I have been exercising, not only for myself but hopefully to set an example for all of us,” he told the audience, which included school children and adults.
The Jamaica Moves Campaign is a response by the Ministry of Health to the prevalence of NCDs among Jamaicans. It encourages persons to maintain a healthy lifestyle through regular physical activity and a balanced diet.
The Black River leg was the fifth staging of the campaign’s road shows, which are to be taken to all 14 parishes.