Lifestyle Has Become The Root Of All Evil

Recently the Barbados government trumpeted the appointment of Dr. Trevor Hassell who is the new Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases Czar, the official title conferred is Special Envoy for Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases (CNCDs) in Barbados.

It is no secret Barbados has been struggling to curb the rising number of Barbadians afflicted with CNCDs. BU despite the preponderance of evidence remains optimistic that Dr. Hassell’s appointment in addition to the focus it will bring on CNCDs will yield positive results. If we can compare against the success of Dr. Carol Jacobs who was appointed Czar of HIV and AIDS fifteen years ago, the jury is still out on whether Barbados has been successful in significantly curbing HIV/AIDS penetration.

The sad reality however is that the growing number of Barbadians suffering from CNCDs is probably linked to lifestyle behaviour which is a global trend. There is a media report which suggests:  “the number of adults who have been diagnosed with diabetes worldwide has more than doubled since 1980 to 347 million, a far larger number than previously thought, a new study has found.” Diabetes is just one of many CNCDs which is giving cause for concern for a few in Barbados. It is a problem which continues to strike at the national purse given our ‘free’ healthcare policy.

The challenge for Minister of Health Donville Inniss and Barbadians is that we live in times where the KFC brand is recognizable to a 2 year old even before being able to utter their name. If we accept that we now live in a time where to eat fast food is as normal as drinking water, please tell us how how Dr. Hassell, Minister Inniss or any other member of Homo sapiens will be able to successfully turn the CNCDs situation around in Barbados?   One is left to wonder if it is all not simply a PR gimmick to satisfy a society in denial that we are following the script.

A key characteristic of modern society is the need to deliver convenience. The time needed to prepare home cooked meals, cultivate a backyard garden, shop at farmgates, walk short distances instead of using the motor car, limiting the use of pesticides and herbicides in the environment and other activities which support a healthy lifestyle do not factor in the current design.

The love of money is said to be the root of all evil but based on the current trend, lifestyle appears to be a fierce rival.


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No Comments on “Lifestyle Has Become The Root Of All Evil”

  1. Charles S.Cadogan Sr July 1, 2011 at 2:03 AM #

    I strongly agree with everything that you have said. Barbadians seem to have lost touch with all the natural things that helped many of the older people like myself to live longer lives with less illness; I am now 71 years old. But I have been living in the US for over 45 years to the present. I had PROSTATE CANCER. But I got it taken care of, and I am now CANCER FREE going on 10 years in September; I don’t believe in fast foods,or can goods. I still cook the OLD BAJAN WAY, fixing all the dishes I was accustomed to from back home; I eat
    COU COU sometimes twice a week. I have fed all my children her the way I was being fed back in Barbados.. If the folks in Barbados don’t wake up and realize that all the fast foods that they are eating has lots of preservatives and additives which in the long run will cause problems one way our the other. Come back to the old way of eating and taking care of yourselves. These fast food places are in business to make money at the expense of your health; Buy local, and eat home cooked meals from the produce that grows in Barbados; Take walks and go to the beach and enjoy the luxury of being able to take a sea bath which is also good exercise; Healthy people are HAPPIER PEOPLE;


  2. Crusoe July 1, 2011 at 5:43 AM #

    Good and valuable article and well said Charles.

    Processed foods are terrible. Some things like rice and bread, even pasta, are staples and, with vegetables etc, are essential.

    A few like yogurt are good to an extent.

    But the ‘packaged meals and canned soups etc are unhealthy, too much additives as Charles says, too much salt and even sugars.

    As for the ‘sodas’ or our name ‘sweet drinks’, fire them. Loads and loads of sugar in every bottle. Then there is the gas inside which when ingested is not good for you either.

    That is the first thing to fire.


  3. jack spratt July 1, 2011 at 6:15 AM #

    Amazing how the criticism of these foods come so glibly out of the thoughts of many and yet Chefette is full… even on Sundays!


  4. David July 1, 2011 at 6:39 AM #

    Interesting you should mention sodas, here is an article which dispels the myth that diet drinks edify the anatomy in any way.

    Diet soda may be making you fat
    Think you’re making a healthier choice when you reach for diet soda instead of a sugary soft drink? Think again.
    Diet soft drinks may have minimal calories, but they can still have a major impact on your waistline, according to two studies presented at a meeting of the American Diabetes Association in San Diego.
    Researchers at the Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio tracked 474 people, all 65 to 74 years old, for nearly a decade, measuring the subjects’ height, weight, waist circumference, and diet soft drink intake every 3.6 years. The waists of those who drank diet soft drinks grew 70 percent more than those who avoided the artificially sweetened stuff; people who drank two or more servings a day had waist-circumference increases that were five times larger than non-diet-soda consumers.
    The findings are in line with those of a 2005 study, also conducted by researchers at the Texas Health Science Center, in which the chance of becoming overweight or obese increased with every diet soda consumed.


  5. just only asking July 1, 2011 at 6:53 AM #


    Nice article. Check it out, we have reached the stage where we want every thing instantly; instant rise to the stop, instant wealth, instant food; that is every thing in a hurry.

    The Ministry of Health is doing its best, but the citizens must realize that they have their part to play. I have seen messages from the Ministry where it is advising its citizens to reduce the comsumption of salt and keep active. Ggrowing up, every child used to participate in physical activity, now, particularly the young men, they dont even want to sweat.

    Barbadians have emulated the the north american lifestyle, they want the biggest house, the fasted prepared food that is unhealthy, look at the amount of chefeette restaruranst we have about here selling salty and very greasy chicken. It is time the Ministry of Health go further and mandate that restaruants show the amount of calories in a serving etc. Last month was in America and saw displayed that a slice of pizza contained 500 calories. We need to ensure that the restaurants and fast food places reduce the amount of salt in their prepartions of meals. That goes for the hotels as well.

    Home Economic shold be a mandatory subjects in schools. I am aware that the Ministry of Education is insisting that canteen operators at the schools provide healthy snacks, put the children prefer things like macroni & cheese, potato chips etc.and those fattening foods and refuse to buy vetagble and fruits. Cleary, the problem is the early socialistion children have been exposed to in the type of foods they eat. It therefore means that PAREDOS should not only be educating about parenthood, but also about preparing healthy foods.

    Barbadians dont even want to plant s fruit tree, on my little 2X3 i have about 10 diffeernt fruit trees. WE continue to complaint about the high cost of fruits, but trees dont need much care and yet we prefer to plant grass. When i was a younstger we use to go and dig the potatoes and yams, nobody want to do that to help reduce their expenditure. some dont even want to eat things likd breadfruit, yams and things like edoes, those foods with complex carbohydrates.

    lifestyle diseases are wrecking havoc on our resources and the citizens must recognize that the more money govt has to spend on health, the less is has for other social activities. Until we begin to play our part, the problem assocaited with cncd will worsen.


  6. Paul Barnes July 1, 2011 at 7:24 AM #

    I’ve been living and working in Bermuda for nearly 5 years, and one of the first things that struck me when I got acquainted with my workmates was the high incidence of diabetes among them. I thought the incidence of diabetes in Barbados was high, but here in Bermuda it is astronomical by comparison. Ironically, there is only one US-style fast food outlet in all of Bermuda (a KFC outlet, naturally), so the problem with diabetes is probably not due to an over-saturation of fast food products in the market. I would not say that the average Bermudian’s diet is markedly any less healthy than the average Barbadian’s, but there must be some factor that I am missing. Maybe people in Bermuda consume more processed and preserved foods generally…there is not much locally-grown produce available in Bermuda, and what is available, is expensive.


  7. BGI July 1, 2011 at 8:11 AM #

    Why are the fast food outlets crowded every Saturday night? For a number of reasons (here are 3) – one, Barbadians have gotten lazy, and don’t like to cook healthy meals anymore, especially on the weekends as they feel this is the time to kick back and let it all hang out. Two – Barbadian parents no longer know how to relate to their children, so they go off to the restaurant playground to let them burn off steam, or they just let them roam the streets like packs of wild dogs – just don’t come back home pregnant, ya hear? And third, children are now ruling the roost, and demand this type of diet.
    I feel it is too late for us as a society, but not too late for us as individuals to take a stand for better health


  8. Nia July 1, 2011 at 9:11 AM #

    I was disgusted when I saw that KFC ad in the paper.


  9. Zoe July 1, 2011 at 9:11 AM #

    “For the LOVE of MONEY* IS* the root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their GREEDINESS*, and have pierced themselves through with many SORROWS.” ( I Tim. 6: 10 Emphasis added)

    No, these ‘lifestyles’ are not competing with ‘For the love of money…” but are an actual outflow FROM, a result OF “…their GREEDINESS have pierced them with manny SORROWS” I.e., diabeties, HBP, etc, etc., as the Word of God, the Bible, warnes:

    “Do NOT love the world, (system) or the things in the world, ( Commercialism, etc, etc). If anyone loves the world, the love of the love of the Father is not in him.”

    “For ALL* that IS* IN* the world – the LUST of the flesh, the LUST of the eyes, and the PRIDE* of life – is nt of the Father but is of the world. And tthe world (system) is passing away, and the LUST of it, but he who does the will of God aides forever.” ( I John 2: 15-17 Emphasis added).

    ‘The world’ does not refer to the physical Creation, but to the sphere of EVIL operating in our world under the dominion of Satan (See 4:4; 5:19; John 12: 31; 14:30; 16:11).

    The problen IS mankinds heart, and the desires for EVERYTHING, the eye SEES, ‘…I want that woman/man….I WANT that house….I want that BIG SUV, I WANT that tasty FOOD…’ and the list goes on, and yes, PRIDE… I can’t say sorry for hurting Jane or Johnny, I bigger than she/he, SIN is the root of it all, and only Jesus and His Holy Atonng Blood, can cleanse us from this inherent, iniquity.


  10. Ping Pong July 1, 2011 at 9:20 AM #

    Present day Bajan cooking is in the main frying of meats and fish, over boiling of vegetables, heavy use of cheese and milk products ( macaroni pie, scalloped potatoes and corn pie) and an abundant use of salt! Couple these with the more than generous portions, a generally sedentary lifestyle, high consumption of carbonated beverages, alcohol, lots of bread and processed snacks (e.g corn curls, cheeweez etc), fatty foods (pig tails, chicken wings, souse, fish cakes); it is no wonder that the incidence of chronic non communicable diseases are rising.

    KFC etc is only exacerbating the problem. Like many other aspects of our culture and way of doing things, because something is “Bajan” does not mean that it is always good.


  11. Hopi July 1, 2011 at 10:40 AM #

    Since the “Officials” say that the #s have > 2x since 1980, you can almost guarantee that the #s have actually quadrupled. This is what the big scam called globalisation is all about. Everything [but wealth] must be globalised including diseases and diabetes isn’t something that just happened by accident, like AIDS it was brought into being. Has the MOH actually taken the time to examine the components of VACCINES that the WHO insist everyone receive. Today with manufactured H1N1 and many others diseases communicable & non-com…, the “Authorities” r mandating that everyone be vaccinated and NOW they are injecting RFID chips via these same vaccines into ur bloodstream.

    So its not really communicable & non-com….diseases that are killing us…our greatest and deadliest disease is IGNORANCE! We sit back and accept the word from the so-called authorities just because we think they have power over us, but the only power they have is what we give them.

    They import poison and tell you that its food all in the name of big business. They instill foolish pride & trick you into leaving the land & cultivation of ur own food so that they can sell it off to make Barbados a playground for the filthy rich, while the ‘big boys’ like Monsanto cultivate PURE POISON [not from concentrate] and sell it back to you.

    IGNORANCE of all things truly virtuous to us & STUPID PRIDE is the DISEASES that will kill Bajans.


  12. Technician July 1, 2011 at 10:42 AM #

    I can just picture Zoe now…..walking around like Moses with rod in hand forsaking the ‘pleasures’ of the world…..helping his brotherman (Arabs and Muslims ) while spreading the Word and showing compassion for the Haitian people and tolerance for other world views……..

    Then I woke up.


  13. David July 1, 2011 at 11:00 AM #

    One does not have to get too scientific about this issue, there was a time not too long ago when our menu included more natural foods and there was more physical activity. A comparative of then and now study would expose such.

    It does not mean as Pong stated that we were all healthy campers, it is all relative.


  14. Technician July 1, 2011 at 11:15 AM #

    @ David…..

    You are so right!
    We ate badly back then too.
    Do you remember ‘crackling’, touched pork, blood pudding, souse etc?
    What we had though, was lots of exercise. We walked more for longer distances. Now we drive everywhere for everything. We don’t even park and walk as everything from the newspaper vendor to the ATM is now drive-through mentality.


  15. Sargeant July 1, 2011 at 12:20 PM #

    KFC seems to be the bogeyman and yet Chefette has more outlets.

    It is a “First World” country so we will have all the lifestyle diseases that affluence affords, so in addition to diabetes expect more of coronary disease, gout etc.

    It seems no one exercises any moderation any more, when I walk through the Food Court at Sheraton and observe the plates loaded up or on the odd occasion that I have gone to Brown Sugar …. Souse on top of everything


  16. the Scout July 1, 2011 at 12:49 PM #

    It is now thw norn to see young children especially and some older persons too, drinking a coke and eating a “rock cake” for breakfast. Then there is the pork limes and fish fries, especially on weekends, at this time of years. Added to that is the regular visits to the fast food joints for many families on their way home with the school children. No wonder all the international fast food companies are lining up to get into Barbados. I’ve said it before, it is time the Barbados government,( whoever they are), bring some sanity to this fast food craze as it is costing the government millions of dollars every years to deal with victims of excess fast and greasy foods. Just like they controlled smoking, the unhealthy living also needs controlling.


  17. the Scout July 1, 2011 at 12:52 PM #

    All that with little or no exercise, now we are seeing a growing number of people, up early in the morning walking but certainly this is not enough because it is back to the same bad habits.


  18. Hants July 1, 2011 at 1:23 PM #

    I eat more fast food than I should. However I try to also eat healthy at home.

    Fish,vegetables,ground provisions and cou cou two or three times a week.
    It is easy to eat healthy in Toronto because Food is still not expensive compared to Barbados.

    Barbados is now a modern society and there is enormous pressure on parents and children are bombarded with advertisements,supermarkets full of snacks and what child would not want to go play at Chefette.
    Ever heard the ads for “proppa pork” and de “Pork lime”.

    Then there is the cost of preparing food at home and both parents working and coming home tired.

    There is no easy solution.


  19. Hants July 1, 2011 at 1:24 PM #

    Happy Canada day Sargeant.


  20. the Scout July 1, 2011 at 2:09 PM #

    Fasr foods in Barbados is NOT cheap, a simple snack box is approx. bds$ 10.00. It is easy for a family to spend bds$ 100.00 per trip to one of these restaurants for a basic meal for five persons. I marvel at bajans who cry out for the high cost of living but are still in one of these places at least four times per week, the money some of them spend at restaurants alone is more than many bajans work for in a week.


  21. the Scout July 1, 2011 at 2:16 PM #

    What is happening in this country right now is an alarming amount of relatively young bajans are experiencing strokes and heart attacks, also many very young children, some not yet ten years old are diabetic and many are obese. Fast food and little exercise is responsible for much of the unhealthy conditions of bajans. This is what we pay for progress.


  22. Sargeant July 1, 2011 at 2:29 PM #

    Hants, thanks and a happy Canada Day to you and all the other folks up here who visit the blog

    BTW Hants I thought that you were a Royalist and was in Ottawa visiting Kate & Wills 🙂


  23. David July 1, 2011 at 2:34 PM #


    Don’t be so literal see KFC as the symbol.


  24. Fran July 1, 2011 at 3:39 PM #

    One of the factors that we might be overlooking is that the older people cleansed their systems regularly.

    Just today I heard Dr Odle say on VOB that diabetes is not a problem of too much sugary foods but more because we do not clean our bodies, the pancreas becomes sluggish and can no longer utilize the excess sugars in our bodies.

    As Tech rightly said the older folk use to eat plenty pork fat and other things but they exercised by walking since they had little choice and they also cleansed their bodies with some good old epsom salts or castor oil.

    Asking restaurants to change or adjust their menus will do little until each of us take responsibility for our own health and well being.


  25. Hants July 1, 2011 at 3:46 PM #

    @ the Scout,

    Starting with the BU family, we should try and influence young people to eat healthier.

    We have to cook proper food at home more often and include more fish, vegetables and fruit.

    That picture of two children eating fried chicken would have been tolerable if they were shown sharing a bowl of salad.

    A big problem for Bajans is that you can buy cooked food in supermarkets. I saw the majority of people buying Rice and peas,fried chicken or fish and macaroni pie but no vegetables.

    I do the same when I am on holiday but I also add salad or cooked vegetables.
    De food does be real sweet


  26. David July 1, 2011 at 3:53 PM #


    It is called ‘food to go’ and comes with the obligatory microwave instructions.


  27. David July 1, 2011 at 6:16 PM #

    In the old days visits to the doctor were few and far between.

    This may start a chicken and egg argument.


  28. Colonel Buggy July 1, 2011 at 10:14 PM #

    Strange how we just about dissed Rosemary Parkinson’s blog on the dangers associated with the widespread use of pesticide Round Up,but can all jump in and condemn KFC et al. The use of Round Up probably affects more people in the island than eating KFC.


  29. Readydone July 2, 2011 at 7:18 AM #

    Infographic by Carrentals – Peak Oil Consumption


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