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PESHAWAR: Health experts have said that Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) including health illness were major causes of premature deaths worldwide and more dangerous than coronavirus.

The experts were speaking in an awareness seminar on heart and NCDs organized under the auspices of Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH) here at local hotel said a press release issued here on Sunday. General Secretary and Director Operation PANAH, Dr Sana Ullah Ghumman presided over the seminar.

President Of PANAH, Major General Masoodur-Rehman Kayani (retd), Vice Chancellor Health Services Academy Islamabad Dr. Shehzad Ali Khan, Associate Professor of Nutrition, Khyber Medical University Dr. Khalid Iqbal, Consultant Food Policy Program, Gahi Munawar Hussain informed the participants about causes and treatment of these fatal diseases.

University of Agriculture Peshawar, Human Nutrition Department, ASI Anti-Narcotics Force Peshawar Faqraz, Food Authority Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Dr Ayesha Sana, Chairman Da Haq Awaz Haji Muhammad Shafiq President Khyber Union of Journalists Nasir Hussain, President Media Professionals Association Amjad Ali Khan Yousafzai and a large number of senior journalists and other representatives of different organizations attended.

The experts said NCDs were major challenge to social and economic development, adding heart, obesity, diabetes, cancer and other diseases of NCDs cause more than 2,200 deaths daily in Pakistan. They said tobacco and sugary drinks were one of major cause of NCDs and its consumption can be reduced by increasing taxes.

PANAH General Secretary and Director Operations Sana Ullah Ghumman said the foundation of PANAH was laid in 1984 aimed at to create awareness among the people about NCDs diseases and to take timely steps to protect people against heart, obesity, cancer, diabetes and other NCDs.

He said that corona virus cause more than 100 deaths a day, but more than 2,200 people lost battle for life daily due to NCDs. Sana Ullah Ghumman said people have changed their priorities over time and natural foods were replaced by artificial foods, which leads to a rapid increase in NCDs. He said one of the major causes of these diseases is smoking and consumption of sugary drinks.

Major General Masoodur-Rehman Kayani (retd) and Vice Chancellor Health Services Academy Islamabad Dr. Shehzad Ali Khan said that patients with non communicable diseases such as heart, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, chronic respiratory disease and cancer have an increased risk of COVID-19. He urged government to increase taxes on tobacco and sugary drinks to reduce the consumption of tobacco and sugar sweetened beverages as these are two main causes of NCDs.

Munawar Hussain, Consultant Food Policy Program Gahi, and Dr. Khalid Iqbal, Associate Professor of Nutrition, Khyber Medical University, said that NCDs cause premature death worldwide. The burden of NCDs is a major challenge to social and economic development.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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