My #ncdchallenge to everyone!

Recently the viral videos of the ALS ice bucket challenge has raised global awareness to ALS. While I do support this cause and know someone whose father has ALS, in Jamaica the reality is that unconditional support for our own charities could do with its own awareness boost.

If you need a challenge to act on then my challenge to the Jamaican online community will not send icy cold shivers down your spin, nor will it be controversial enough to seem like a waste of our ever precious commodity, water.

I challenge you to post a short video clip of you doing any form of exercise/ workout and challenging others to do the same or make a Ja$500 donation to the JAMAICAN Heart Foundation, Diabetes or Sickle cell unit. As a bonus you may finish your exercise with a worthwhile ice cold water dunk to add the ALS effect. One caveat you cannot exercise for less than 30 minutes.

Almost every week we hear of a 5k run, while every month we hear of a good friend that has had a NCD related incident! We need to motivate the 1k fun walkers the average Joe, the smokers and not just the regular competitive personalities who run for a personal challenge. Everyone of us has had our lives affected by a NCD and it’s time to raise the awareness and halt it’s rapid explosion. Let us all promote some form of regular physical activity and create an environment that can reduce the risk of heart attack, colon cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure, and may even reduce the risk of a stroke.

I know my peeps, Jamaicans never want to read, so to understand why my challenge follow the links below to see where Jamaica ranks with NCD – non-communicable disease. We are facing an aging population that will live longer. Hypertension is the most frequently reported NCD in nearly all population quintiles, followed by diabetes and asthma. the worrying part is the recorded increase in NCD among our Jamaican women!

NCDs among our Jamaican women has increased much faster than our men as such they have shown a higher prevalence in asthma, diabetes, hypertension, and arthritis. Has our modern unhealthy dieting contributed to our appetite of risk factors for high blood pressure, raised blood glucose.? Could this be a direct result of our women becoming “Foodies” that eat out rather than prepare healthy home cooked meals?

I’m not proposing a publicity stunt it’s about awareness of the things that affect us daily. Now go out there and exercise and challenge our unfit friends to a half hour round of frisbee, walking/ jog in the park, swimming or a hike up into our beautiful mountains.



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