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DOH-ARMM to launch info drive on obesity and overweight among region’s residents

Cotabato City (July 6, 2015) – The Department of Health of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DOH-ARMM) will conduct an information campaign to address obesity and overweight problems among residents in the region, the Health department chief said on Monday.

Dr. Kadil Sinolinding, DOH-ARMM secretary, said his department has lined-up a series of activities including community-based information drives in the different towns in the region, provincial and regional health forums, and medical missions.

Overweight and obesity refer to body weight that are greater than what is considered healthy in relation to a person’s height. This indicates excessive accumulation and storage of fats in the body. An overweight person has a body mass index (BMI) of greater than, or equal, to 25, and an obese person has a BMI of 30 or over.

Being overweight, DOH-ARMM said, means having weight over and above the norm, while being obese means having excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body.

This year’s nutrition campaign is “Timbang iwasto sa tamang nutrisyon at ehersisyo (Achieve normal weight through proper nutrition and physical activity).” In 2014, the department’s campaign focused on disasters and their effect on nutrition among Filipinos. The National Nutrition Month is observed July of each year by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 491, which was signed into law in 1974.

“Our objectives are to increase awareness on proper nutrition and physical activity to prevent obesity, encourage action, to attain normal weight and manage obesogenic environment,” Sec. Sinolinding said during the region’s launching of the 2015 Nutrition Month on Monday, July 6, at the region’s seat of government in this city.

“Obesogenic environment (refers to situations) that encourage people to eat unhealthy food and not do enough exercise,” Sec. Sinolinding added. He underscored that obesity has become one of the problems of the country, citing 31.1% of overweight and obesity prevalence among 20 years old and above in the Philippines in 2013.

The National Capital Region posted the highest number of obese and overweight Filipinos with 39.9% among the 17 regions, while ARMM is at the 14th spot with 23.2% among adults.

Physical inactivity, low consumption of fruits and vegetables, and child undernutrition that usually occurs during the first 1,000 days of life as well as poor breastfeeding practices, are among the possible reasons for overweight and obesity in the Philippines.

Sec. Sinolinding added having proper nutrition, healthy lifestyle, and regular exercise will lead to proper weight and a healthy body, thus solving the problems on obesity and overweight. (Bureau of Public Information)

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