Founder, Fitness Fair, Dr Uganzi Eke, who made the call during the Launch of a new Fitness Fair store and company website in the Lekki axis of Lagos, stressed that Nigerians must begin to own their health by learning the local nutrition wellness procedure and seeing the physical aspect beyond visiting the gym.
Eke, who is also a pharmacist, stated that contrary to popular thinking, people can actually exercise even at their workplace and have a better lifestyle eating our natural local foods.
According to her, this is what Fitness Fair and its Corporate Wellness project aim to promote among Nigerians by providing holistic information on how to maximise their environment for a healthy lifestyle. For example, the new fitnessfair.ng website, she noted, was meant to encourage a business extension and ease of access to information for individuals and corporate entities interested in joining the wellness lifestyle.
“Corporate Wellness is aimed at taking wellness to the work place. To know that as you are working, you can exercise and eat well. To imbibe the information needed to stay alive and enjoy what you have worked for. We currently do this for ExxonMobil, Unichem and First Bank Insurance. It's also available for individuals”.
Dr. Eke noted that her experience as a pharmacist has exposed her to an unfolding problem in the country as young people keep coming down with lifestyle diseases; diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol related diseases and cancer. She said this development has been discovered to be a result of a major change in lifestyle and key factors that could be changed such as diet, lifestyle and physical activity level.
“So we are raising awareness for everyone to understand that you can take ownership of your health and prevent a lot of these illnesses. We have the Fitness Fair Training on how to make the change. We teach you where you start from, who you are and where you should at least try to get to. The major thing about your life is what you eat, hence Fitness Fair Nutrition. We supply you with information on foods you need to support the lifestyle”, she added.
Speaking further, she explained that Nigeria is blessed with good foods contrary to the belief of many.
"Our people need to be taught how to make food their medicine. The problem we have with our food is the way we cook them. We cook wrong. We are a people who have grown used to overcooking our vegetables, adding too much oil and salt. We add too much additives.
“Our foods are supposed to be eaten more naturally. We should be encouraging our people to eat more of our local content, to go back to our grandmothers’ cooking. Majority of our people look down on our local foods and think only the rice is 'oyinbo' enough for them to eat. There are lot of foods in our villages that are easy to make without much additives like meat and oil. Our people eat them and you see them walking back and forth from farm and living up to hundred years".