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FEEDING YOUR HEALTH

Issue 5 - June 2012
The KEY RING is a monthly publication by the Kampala Baptist Church Men’s Ministry that seeks to provide an avenue where men can share knowledge and understanding of the word of God, experiences, encourage one another as the older men also perform the act of ‘paralambano’ to the younger men. Our prayer is that the Lord will speak to you through these publications.

And what are some of those foods that give you more clients? I will classify the food into two: foods and beverages. Among the risky things to use are tobacco and alcohol. They are known to bring a lot of cancers in the mouth, stomach, oesophagus, in the liver (especially for alcohol) and for tobacco in addition to all the others it also causes cancers in the lungs and larynx. For the foods, the risky ones are red meat, food high in fat especially when comThis month we inquire from the medical experts on how we can best bined with lack of exercise one becomes over weight and then obese and there are many cancers associated with such conditions especially those of the breast, feed our health. liver and pancreas. So if we all ate well, would you be out of business? NO! There are things that start the process, some that encourage it and some that stop or reverse the process; it’s a very complicated process. Usually it starts with an individual’s genetic makeup like for the prostate cancer; if one of your family members ever suffered from it, the chances of you getting it are about 6 or 10 times higher. So for people from such families they have to be extra careful because the genetic makeup which can start the cancer development is already present in their bodies. If cancer is genetically driven, why are we these days having more cases of cancer than ever recorded in the past years? Part of what has caused that is the advancement in information technology which has made information flow easy. There is also a blood test people take to find out if they have cancer and many come out positive but that test coming out positive does not necessarily mean that a person has the real cancer. Population increase is also another factor that can explain that especially now that people are living to make over 60 years because cancer is mainly a disease for the 60s and above. So what feeding pattern can help reduce one’s chances of getting cancer? Foods that will reduce one’s chances of getting cancer are those rich in vitamins particularly vitamin D and E which greatly help in protecting one from many cancers including cancer of the prostate. Greens or vegetables are rich in those vitamins and for vitamin D if you have melanin you can just get it by standing in the sun light. Let the men avoid frying foods and especially frying using already used oil because every time you reuse oil it accumulates carbons and it becomes more toxic with extra usage. Let them also keep away from red meat. If they are to eat it, let them boil it and as much as possible not barbecue because though tasty, that meat encourages cancers a lot. The smoke on the meat like tobacco smoke encourages a lot of cancers. I would encourage them to eat fresh fish and chicken more. Any final remarks to the men Let food be thy medicine. Let them also avoid being overweight because it comes with a number of diseases like cancer as well as heart diseases.

Why did you choose cancer treatment out of the many medical fields you could have ventured into? I did not think I would be treating cancers while at University. I actually thought I would be in psychiatry or probably treating infectious diseases but after attending a couple of lecturers on radiology and despite the fact that other students thought the lecturer was making up the stuff he was teaching, I decided to apply for a position that was being advertised; the position was seeking for someone that desired to specialise in radiology. My lecturer was very excited to see me. After about 2 years we got a machine that used radiation to treat cancer and since I had had some training on how to use the machine in Germany I decided to try it out. At that stage I experienced many challenges using the machine so I decided to go have some more training in radiotherapy and that is how I ended up treating cancers around 1993. So treating cancers is my profession and diagnosis is my hobby so to call it. So as a radiotherapist, what can’t you miss on your menu? I enjoy traditional food: matooke, sweet potatoes, ground nuts and some meat like beef or pork. I am very selective in what I eat but I must confess there are things I eat even when I know that they could cause me problems like a lot of beef or any red meat. Do you think what people eat contributes to the number of times they visit your clinic? Sure. The Germans say “Man is, thus man eats” meaning that man is what he eats. If you feed well you will be healthy and if you do not eat healthy food you will probably be sick. Hippocrates said that “let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food” in other words if you feed well, that food will help you not to become sick.

CANCERS

Why did you choose dentistry out of the many medical fields you could have ventured into? Well I have always been interested in the medical field and had seen my dad practice dentistry for a long time so I naturally became more interested in his field and started to appreciate the little intricate detail that leads to a good treatment. So a dentist, what can’t you miss on your menu? Haha. You should blame my mother for putting fish in all my meals when I was much younger. Do you think what people eat contributes to the number of times they visit you as a dentist? Definitely; all the food we eat in some way impacts our oral health. Equally importantly though is the oral hygiene. A deliberate effort has to be made by everybody to ensure that they have good oral hygiene and maintain their annual dental check-up. What are some of those foods that give you more clients? A wide variety of foods can lead to decay as long as they can be metabolized by bacteria in the mouth. However the food category most focused on is that of the refined sugars e.g. chocolate, toffee, coke cola, etc. What effects do the refined sugars produce that turns people into your patients? These foods act as an energy source for the bacteria in the mouth. The bi-product of this is acid that slowly eats away at the tooth leading to the formation of a cavity. The cavity can progress further into the tooth causing a pulpitis (inflammation of the pulp) which is usually painful.

D E N TA L

So what foods would you recommend for men never to miss on their menu if they are to have good dental health? I would advise they take a well-balanced diet and a decreased intake of refined surfaces like toffee, candy, etc. Equally important is to maintain a good oral hygiene by brushing their teeth at least twice a day (morning and just after their last meal) and flossing. If we all observed a diet as you recommend above, would we never have to visit you in your capacity as a dentist? Not exactly! Although many assume we only deal with cavities. We deal with a range of issues from correction of maligned teeth, impacted teeth, trauma to the face and teeth, esthetic improvement, etc. Are there any dental problems that are specific to men only, if yes which ones are those? None of the dental problems are specific to men alone

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1 Corinthians 10:31

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