Youth Health Mela 2012- Aspiring for a Healthy India
Healthy people make a healthy nation. However recent changes in life style, untraditional influences, ecological imbalances, improper food habits are contributing to the creation of a sick community. In view of the soaring health concerns affecting youth in the recent past, 'The Youth Health Mela 2012' is organised from the 22nd to 26th February 2012 at Valluvar Kottam, Chennai.
Mr. Narayanan, the editor of 'Paadam' magazine emphasised on the consistent development in cancer treatment at the Cancer Institute. Although health and medical innovation is on the rise on one hand, life-style diseases in today's society plague the flip side. He also pointed out the causes of health risks, which include change in immediate surroundings, schools ignoring sports and deprivation of physical activities because of ecological change. 'The Youth Health Mela 2012' is an initiation to bridge the gap existing in the current health care and lifestyle. Youth are spread in factions such as schools, colleges and corporate, hence change has to be incorporated in these sections. To prevent Tamil Nadu from becoming a sickness infested land, students were urged to spread message against tobacco and drug addiction.
Chairing the Volunteers:
Dr. V. Shanta, Chairperson, Cancer Institute (WIA) said it was important for the younger generation to be aware of the world around them. Various changes and problems have cropped in the health scenario. Though communicable diseases are under control through efforts such as polio drops and vaccination, curbing the non-communicable diseases such as cancer or diabetes still remains a challenge. Though some diseases remain incurable, most diseases are preventable. Instead of cancer known as 'Emperor of All Maladies' (popularised by biography on cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee) Dr. V. Shanta claimed tobacco 'a leader of all maladies'. She provided statistics where tobacco bore 40% responsibility for causing cancer and highlighted its contribution to cardio vascular and other tobacco related diseases.
Claiming Authority over Health:
Mrs. Shanta Sheela Nair, (Retd.) IAS officer, Vice Chairperson, Tamil Nadu State Planning Commission, mentioned how doctors prescribe innumerable tests on a visit. From her point of view, good health meant letting nature cure instead of consuming medication. The communication between cells within the body maintains robust mechanism to prevent or cure diseases i.e. immunity. However this mechanism is weakened by environmental changes. The health complications faced by the youth drains them off their energy, which can otherwise be used constructively. Mrs. Shanta Nair quoted Prime Minister Manmohan Singh calling malnutrition a national shame. She said, "Malnutrition is a hidden hunger and a critical health issue in infants." Obese kids in urban areas who may seem well fed also suffer from malnourishment. In fact every third malnutrition child is an Indian child. Furthermore many youth are said to fall a prey to HIV / AIDS because of promiscuous lifestyle. Other lifestyle diseases like mental depression caused by malnutrition among teenagers, interpersonal violence and suicide resulting from mental illness is on rise. While tobacco and alcohol consumption has resulted in higher road traffic incidents.
Hon'ble Justice K.N. Basha, Madras high Court, reinstated the conviction to say 'No' to tobacco and alcohol. In his observation, substance abuse constitutes one of the major causes of domestic violence and unrest in families. Latest fads insinuating slimmer waistlines make many a youth to skip breakfast and other regular nourishments required for normal functioning of the body. So, in the best interest of the future of India, the five-day event focuses on all aspects of health and well being of youth. Debates and talks will be held in the venue. Stalls relating to youth health concerns and benefits are also installed in the premises.
'The Youth Health Mela 2012' emphasises the great thoughts of Aristotle, "Good habits formed at youth make all the difference"