“Many Christians are living in fear – fear of the unknown, fear of the present and fear of the future; and because of fear, Christians, instead of calling ‘Abba, Father,’ are turning to ‘Baba,’ a reference to Babalawo (sorcerer or diviner in Yoruba culture).”
– Dr Kelvin Onongha, Visiting Professor in Missions, Andrews University, USA.
Noodles are staples for both children and adults. But it may be a major cause of death for the next generation.
A consultant practitioner in internal medicine at the Babcock University Teaching Hospital, Dr. Moji Ariyo has raised alarm over the rise of blood pressure cases among teenagers.
Dr. Ariyo believes that the increasing diagnosis of blood pressure among teenagers is linked to the high consumption rate of ‘sodium’ in Noodles seasoning.
Speaking to our correspondent in her office recently, Ariyo warned that if the trend is not checked, it will continue to pose a threat to the life expectancy of Nigeria’s youth.
In an ongoing study, Ariyo, who is also Head of Internal Medicine Department at the Benjamin Carson School of Medicine in Babcock University, said she has discovered that young people who should have a normal blood pressure of 120/80mmHg, now have blood pressure of 170/150 mmHg, which is highly detrimental to their health.
Her research targets two categories of students. Some who eats Noodles, and then will stop, and those who eat Noodles, and will continue. These categories of students will be checked for a period of three months, to see the effect of sodium on those who stopped, and those that continued.
She stated that the seasoning in Noodles is loaded with salt (Mano Sodium Glutanate MSG), which is a very potent source of sodium,
Mrs Ariyo warned that the daily amount of sodium needed in a person from all food sources is 1500mg. But Noodle seasoning alone contains between 650mg and 1000mg (milligram). A teenager who takes two packs of Noodles has already exceeded the daily allowed amount by 500mg.
Sodium is not totally bad; it has its significance and usefulness in the body. It controls water distribution throughout the body, aids muscle contraction, and supports transmission of nerve impulses. But large intake of sodium can cause hypertension, kidney disease, obesity, water retention and dehydration in the body.
According to Dr. Ariyo’s research, most teenagers do not drink as much water as they should to clear or balance the excess sodium in their bodies. They prefer to take sodas, which can also endanger their lives.
Reeling out factors that predispose students to large consumption of noodles, Ariyo noted that ‘‘one main problem on Babcock University campus is that students do not like the food served, and they tend to turn to a quick easy alternative, which is the noodles’’.
Speaking to our correspondent on why students prefer noodles to the food provided at the Cafeteria, Ayodele Adewunmi, a 400L Nursing student stated: ‘‘ I do not like the fact that all the food served is strictly vegetarian, and I do not like Tofu’’.
Dr. Ariyo advised that the University cafeteria can cook better, and they can also have more food varieties, so that students are tasting food variety and flavour, and not just salt. To accomplish this, the School wants to work closely with nutritionist to see how they can improve and enhance the flavour of food served naturally, without compromising with the health benefits.
Ariyo added that ‘‘the country’s diet is unhealthy, and if we are able to share the knowledge of healthy nutrition through the media and cookbooks, we can share to the world how to really eat a healthy diet; this will play a significant role in reducing hypertension in people’’.
She also advised parents to learn about healthy nutrition, because they play a very key role in the lives of their children. “What parents serve their children early in life will tell on their future,” she urged.
Meanwhile, Dr. Mojisola Ariyo, has said that exercise is important for youths in their mission towards a brighter future as it help in healthy memory performance.
Speaking to our correspondent, she stated that one of the major challenges with the young generation is that they have lost the culture of exercise and have fallen in love with the pleasure of recreation.
‘Exercise is a activity that only responsible people who recognise the need to keep their bodies on-the-go can indulge in’, she said.
Apart from aiding quick digestion and building the immune system, the expert noted that exercise can assist the memory, because the former increases good blood flow to the brain region.
‘One might find a student having a hard time with retaining what has been read and you just might be surprised to find the challenge to be a lack of exercise at the end of the situation’, she said ‘exercise is more than just a way to health.’
She expressed dissatisfaction to the level of exercising activities in the University since her arrival from the United States, disclosing that students, especially females are quite ‘heavy’ for their ages.
In a bid to curb excessive weight-gain among students, she had met with the Director of Sports for an early-morning exercise programme to be organised.
More so, Dr. Ariyo called for a revival of female-friendly exercising activities on campus. She maintained that good exercise will work wonders for female students as it would empower them to regulate menstrual cycles and maintain good figures.
She disclosed her wish for the University to have more fun activities included in the extracurricular programmes.
She added that some people are addicted to exercises and spend a ridiculous amount of time exercising. “This is not normal”, she stressed, as it is a result of mental disorder and mostly occurs in Caucasian and White women who exercise till they become anorexic – a medical term for people who are unhealthily lean.
by Chigozi Eti, Doyinsola Orimoloye and Ogaga Akpederi
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The reason the world is coming to Nigeria is that there is superior wealth. The cry of poverty in the land is not of materials, but of ideas. – J. A. Kayode Makinde, 2013.
- Warns there may be a merger of universities
The Vice-Chancellor of Babcock University, Professor J. A. Kayode Makinde has urged development stakeholders in Nigeria to be sensitive to the future of unborn generations.
Delivering the keynote address at an annual colloquium to mark the beginning of the 2013/2014 academic session in the University last week, Professor Makinde urged that sustainable development is that which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
In his words, “sustainable development is a reflection on the past, improvement on the present and a projection into the future.”
Makinde noted that for Nigeria to achieve sustainable development, leaders must lead by example. He said that teachers must practice what they want other to learn.
In his characteristic philosophical twist, Makinde said that when rules go out to exempt the ruler, immunity becomes impunity.
He lamented that while Nigeria is good at creating new fads, the nation has failed in sustaining what is created. “Feasibility is prized above sustainability,” he averred.
The Professor of Religion and Political Philosophy noted that the Nigerian economy is moderated by the band-wagon effect where everyone dives into a venture without a second thought for its sustainability.
He recounted how the eras of popcorn, pure water, and banking boom came and went; now the country is exporting religion and Nollywood.
Makinde noted that within 14 years of the licensing of the first private Universities, there are over about 130 universities in the country with over 50 of them owned and operated by private investors.
With many of these universities – both public and private – not having a clear sustainability framework, he warned that the fate that befell the banks, where many of them had to merge or be liquidated, may befall the tertiary education enterprise.
Makinde also urged that African nations should quit bemoaning how Europe underdeveloped Africa and rise to the occasion of exploiting the vast opportunities extant in their nation.
The VC stressed that while Nigerians are jetting out of their country in search of greener pastures, other nationals, especially of the developed world, are coming to Nigeria to exploit her rich resources.
“The reason the world is coming to Nigeria is that there is superior wealth. The cry of poverty in the land is not of materials, but of ideas,” he quipped.
He noted that for any nation or institution to achieve a sustainable vision, it must prioritise, recognise and reward creative genius that is driven by godly inspiration and anchored on integrity.
Further, he urged that excellence is not a destination, but a direction; because those who think they have arrived soon begin to decline.
Story by: Chigozi Eti, Lecturer in Writing and Media Language, Babcock University.
Caveat: Please note that this article was not commissioned by Babcock University. The author takes full responsibility for the accuracy or otherwise of the content.