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Lahore

November 27, 2017

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‘Run for healthy life’ campaign against obesity launched

LAHORE: The South Asian countries have joined hands here in Lahore on Sunday to launch a campaign “Run for Healthy Life” in each country simultaneously with a view to engaging younger generation in adopting healthy lifestyle to prevent obesity and diabetes in the region.


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“The South Asian countries constitute bulk of the burden of diabetes, categorising the region to be ‘in a statement of emergency’, which prompted the campaign launch to motivate younger generation to do exercise and to learn to eat healthy,” said Dr S Abbas Raza, president, South Asian Federation of Endocrine Societies (SAFES) while speaking at a press conference along with representative members of SAFES from Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal – India is fully on-board although SAFES member from India could not make it to this regional event.


Speaking to the media on the sidelines of a four-day, Nov 23-26, 15th Annual PES-SAFES Summit 2017 titled “Together for Endocrinology”, organised by Pakistan Endocrine Society – South Asian Federation of Endocrine Societies (PES-SAFES) at a local hotel, Dr Abbas Raza regretted that the kids and younger generation had almost been imprisoned in their rooms due to technology. He emphasised the need to bring them out to the playgrounds to run and play games themselves.


The endocrine societies from Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sir Lanka will launch this campaign together to create awareness about obesity, one of the most important risk factors of diabetes. The partners of this campaign aim to prevent the increasing prevalence of obesity by reaching out to schools and broadly to younger generation and conducting awareness sessions on changing lifestyles and increasing physical activities, especially running. “The competitions of running, etc., would be conducted in which not only winners will be rewarded but the participants from bottom half of the competition would be motivated and encouraged for their behaviour change towards healthy lifestyle,” he added.


He said, "SAFES considered it its prime responsibility to work for awareness that obesity and diabetes are preventable – all we need is regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle. Following these simple measures, we can save our future generation from the risk of serious diseases."


Prof Dr Ali Jawa, president of PES, Pakistan, said that Pakistan was ranked as the ninth most obese country in the world according to the Global Burden of Disease Study published in The Lancet medical journal. “There are very limited entities working to address this concern, which is leading to diabetes and other serious diseases, putting our younger generation at risk,” he added. He was very optimistic that the campaign would not only assist in preventing obesity but also diabetes and other diseases associated with obesity.


The SAFES representatives in South Asia, including Prof AK Azad Khan from Bangladesh, Dr Ali Lateef from Maldives, Dr Noel Somasundaram from Sri Lanka, Dr Dina Sharistha from Nepal, pledged to launch vigorous campaign “Run for Healthy Life” in their respective countries. “Insufficient physical activity is a major risk factor for obesity, which is associated with multiple co-morbidities,” they added.


While emphasising on younger generation to adopt healthy lifestyle, they advised people against eating fast food, soft/energy drinks and sugary items, which were ‘poisonous’ for their health and well-being. They observed that the energy drink companies were doing massive advertisements and sponsoring sports events, which easily influenced the kids and younger generation to fall into their trap. Later, the representative members of SAFES from South Asian countries unveiled a special logo for the ‘Run for Healthy Life’ campaign.

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