Know your body – Dr. Aluya
Black people have been advised to know their bodies very well in order to quickly stem any significant changes. Dr. Nelson Aluya, Assistant Professor of Medicine at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School offered this counsel at a community forum organized by the University Hospital and Islamic Community Health Collaborative at the Kings Family Restaurant Newark, NJ March 19, 2017. He said any acute changes in the physical body- must be taken and tackled seriously. “Do not wait to see a doctor,” he urged, “because a stitch in time saves nine.”
Speaking on Hypertension and under the theme “Ask the Doctor” Dr. Aluya urged patients, among other things, to be familiar with their high blood pressure figures and ask their doctors to check high blood pressure in both arms for comparative analysis.
He also entreated patients to be checked for presence of protein in their urine. Protein in urine is a red flag for kidney functionality.
The Nigerian-born doctor said hypertension is described as a silent killer because it has the propensity to suddenly cause havoc without notice or warning. He strongly suggested that parents must discuss family medical history with their children so the latter are conscious of heredity diseases and employ early intervention plans to stem potential development. He pointed out that lifestyle change have been proven to reduce chances of being hypertensive.
Obesity, high salt intake, smoking, stress, lack of physical activities, some cold medicines and remedies, birth control pills, alcoholism, illegal and drug abuses, among others are wont to cause hypertension but are changeable indices that could prevent hypertension.
He remarked that hypertension cost the United States about $73.4 billion in 2009. Turning his attention to Africa, Dr. Nelson Aluya said until recent past when Africa started to adopt some western cultures, High Blood Pressure was relatively not a major health concern, and comparatively alien to Africans (except the very few affluent), but the continent now accounts for 45 percent of hypertensive people in the world. It is estimated that by 2025, about 75 percent of people with hypertension would be from developing countries. He urged people in warm climates to take advantage of and bask in sunny weathers to enhance natural intake of vitamin D since its deficiency could cause High Blood Pressure.
Ultimately, Dr. Aluya suggested it is a good practice to take a trusted friend or family member to the doctor’s office, especially for the elderly.