I would like to share a story which probably a majority of you should be able to relate to as in recent times this factor has been the cause of 61% of deaths in India. Yes, it is the Non-Communicable Diseases or Life Style Diseases that are majorly cause by behavioural factors like increased tobacco use, physical inactivity, and metabolic factors like obesity, high BP, high cholesterol, and high blood glucose level.
My earliest memory about my great grand-parents and their siblings is seeing their active participation in conducting festival celebrations, hosting joint family gatherings and preparing yummy food throughout the year! I don’t remember seeing them fall sick until they got very old till around 85+ years. Then comes my grand-parents and their generation with whom I share several excellent memories as well. I am also very proud of having a working and socially active grand-mom who happened to be a big inspiration for other ladies in the family to go out and work. But along with this I also have some bitter memories of them going through health issues like diabetes, heart related disease and cancer as they reached 60 years due to obesity, BP, diabetes and cholesterol. Now let me talk about my parents and their siblings who are in the age group of 35-50 and are already complaining about these health problems caused mainly due to stress, eating habits, sedentary lifestyle, pollution and changing gender roles. Thus, making diet charts and physical exercise routines has always been the common topic of discussion in our dinner tables.
As you can see, with every new generation the quality of lifestyle has kept deteriorating and it has become even worse for our current generation. Urbanisation and industrialisation have led to congested city roads and increased pollution levels, boom of IT industries has led to advancements in technology along with sedentary life style patterns and misuse of social media by tobacco and alcohol industries has drastically changed the consumer behaviour. As I have grown up seeing some of the extreme complications caused by these NCDs, I consider this as the primary factor to maintain a balanced healthy lifestyle. NCDs like diabetes have a high latency period and once you succumb to it, it is a painful process to reverse.
In India, roughly 60% of the families are similar to mine and I urge you all to enact now. Being fit is to keep body and mental health at a balance. During this lockdown, I have found several ways to ensure a stress-free lifestyle and improve body flexibility. I even made sure that my cousins and other family members participated in yoga sessions I hosted virtually and took good care of their health. With this motivation, I am feeling even more enthusiastic to participate in this ‘India Generosity Run’ organised by Nada India Foundation to commemorate Gandhiji on his birthday and express solidarity with one another.