ABOUT 70% of workers in Port Moresby’s formal workforce are overweight, Health Department’s lifestyle adviser Dr Thomas Vinit said yesterday.
Dr Vinit did not provide a breakdown but said this was based on a survey conducted in the nation’s capital last year.
He said overweight, or obesity, classified internationally as a disease, could be avoided through a balanced diet and plenty of physical activities.
Dr Vinit said this when highlighting the importance of healthy lifestyle for all Papua New Guineans in preparation for the World Diabetes Day on Nov 15.
He also said that diabetes and other heart-related diseases were results of obesity and people should be warned now.
Dr Vinit and a committee made up of police, St John Ambulance, PNG Sports Federation, Hope PNG, NCDC health and Nambawan Supa personnel are organising a “walk for health” in Port Moresby on Nov 15 to mark the day.
The theme for this year’s PNG 2009 World Diabetes Day is “Walk for health and prevent obesity, diabetes and heart diseases”.
Dr Vinit told a meeting of the organisers in Port Moresby yesterday that the walk for health should drive home the message that “prevention is better than cure”.
The committee started meeting two weeks ago and aims to raise awareness and advocacy on healthy lifestyle in the lead-up to Nov 15.
“Walking is a simple gesture of advocating to families and the general public to take part because of the risks involved in diabetes and obesity,” he said.
The 5km walk will follow the annual Fun Run route, starting from Sir John Guise Stadium to Boroko Motors, along Waigani Drive tunnel and RH Hypermart Gordon before returning to the stadium.
The committee expects more than 1,000 people to take part in the event which will start at 6.30am.
Families and government workers are encouraged to walk at their own pace.