A medical practitioner at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital on Friday said pot bellies did not connote 'good living' as referred to by many but rather reflection of a protracted period of accumulated cholesterol that could trigger serious health problems.
Dr. Martin Kyere, a Surgical Consultant, Korle-Bu noted that, "the bigger our tummies the more we become susceptible to deadly diseases such as diabetes or cancer and other many ailments".
Delivering a lecture on the theme: "Caution diabetes kills mind your lifestyle" as part of the 6th annual public lecture organised by the University of Ghana Medical School Association in Accra, he indicated Ghanaians were not health conscious and that, the sad aspect of it was that they had adopted arcane eating habits that predisposed them to all manner of diseases.
Dr Kyere stressed that the continental dishes that many have affinity for in recent times contained a lot of sugar and oily products that was detrimental to their health, yet they do not involve in exercises that would beat down the effect of such foods.
He pointed out that elsewhere in the world when it was discovered that some of the foods they ate were posing serious health problems, they changed their lifestyles but that was not the case here.
"Some years ago Africans have claimed that diabetes, cancer and other diseases were foreign but today science and technology have proven that those diseases are also here with us and has killed many people", he added.
Dr Kyere said about 1.4 million Ghanaians are diabetes patients, excluding those who did not report to the hospitals with majority of them being between the ages of 55-65 and mortality rate of 15 per cent.
He said the situation was alarming as the disease started around the age of 30year but because they were within their active period it was not detected and only report it when it had gotten to a stage that required surgery.
"We hate to amputate patients suffering from diabetes but it is not our fault that is the only option left, if we refuse they will die, but it is largely their fault as they consult herbal doctors and when they fail before they turn to seek medical assistance."
He advised people who frequently pass out urinal to seek medical attention as it was one of the symptoms of diabetes or have a bit of their urinals to detect their sugar content.
Dr. Gilbert Buckle, Shell Ghana Limited, said diabetes was gradually creeping to the arena of the top ten deadly diseases and was all over the country across all ages and present in all sexes.
He said the disease could be permanently controlled for patients to have fulfilling lifestyles and therefore urged individuals to seek early treatment.