Prof. Elizabeth Ngwu, National President of Association of Nigerian Dietitians (AND), has warned Nigerians against wrong dietary information dished out on the social media.
She gave the warning in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Asaba.
Ngwu who spoke on the sideline of the association’s Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference said adherence to such dietary information on social media could compound health conditions.
She said Nigerians, especially those with Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) should beware of wrong dietary information and seek the advice of dieticians to effectively manage their conditions through diets.
“It is common knowledge that the internet and social media platforms have become media for disseminating false nutrition information by quacks. It is also important to note that diet is very crucial in the prevention, management, and control of non-communicable and diet-related diseases,
“We all must have observed an upsurge in Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity and some cancers in Nigeria, associated with lifestyle changes. You often read messages such as ‘squeeze bitter leaves in water and drink the liquid; it cures diabetes’. Such could cause kidney problems,’’ she said.
According to her, the WHO (2018) country profile reported that Non-Communicable Diseases accounted for an estimated 29 percent of all deaths in Nigeria.
“These Non-Communicable Diseases have caused preventable deaths due to poor dietary information and practices,” Ngwu said.
She advised Nigerians to avoid processed foods, embrace local foods and exercise regularly to stay healthy.