Lifestyle doc on a mission

Anesta Henry,

Added 04 April 2012

wednesdaywoman04seqn

LIFESTYLE MEDICAL Practitioner (LMP), Beverley John, is concerned about the future health of Barbados, believing that a country’s health is determined by the health of its people. After being challenged by friends in the local medical field to come to Barbados to offer her specialty to assist in tackling health issues, it was no hard task for her to give up life in New York City, United States, where she taught health studies at a private school and travelled from state to state conducting heath seminars and consultations.  The 37-year-old Seventh-Day Adventist returned home to “Barbados my heartbeat” last year. “When I was overseas, one of my colleagues told me that Barbados was leading in amputations due to diabetes and that there was a high increase in non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in children,” she said. “When I came back, I heard on the news about the cardiovascular problems that children are being diagnosed with. Cardiovascular problems in children are also an issue in America – big time. “NCDs amongst the Afro-American children is very high. This is why [First Lady] Michelle Obama is busy pushing for a proper nutritious diet in the cafeteria in public schools.” As an LMP, John, who is certified and trained from the Wildwood Lifestyle Centre and Hospital, in Lifestyle Medicine, as a medical missionary practitioner, is in the line of duty of educating people in the right principles that would prevent non-communicable disease and for working with people who already have NCDs, putting them on a programme to reverse the disease. Now the founder and director of A Gentle Touch Health & Educational Services here, John is always quick to state that she has a keen interest in women’s and children’s health. The practitioner, who is also qualified in media technology, said: “I am really interested in educating women and children with the right principles on how to prevent lifestyle diseases. “I am not telling children that they can’t have this or they can’t have that. “I am about giving them information to make the right choices so that they would know that at least they have a choice and not just ‘this is the only thing available’. “Let them know that they can choose and inform them about the advantages and disadvantages of what they choose,” said today’s WEDNESDAY WOMAN. While she is currently hosting seminars for women, teaching them about the secrets to eating healthily and making the right lifestyle choices, John is also planning to get to work with children through a Children’s Community Health Club and an agriculture camp.  “I am excited to start these programmes and I would like to start them like today but because of constraints, I have to wait,” she said. “We just had the first children’s national conference on NCDs. Myself and [community activist and MP] Hamilton Lashley, worked on the project together where we hosted the conference to let kids know about non-communicable diseases.”

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