Animal-based Diets in Ghana Responsible for Frequent Ailments
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The conference in Ghana was the first of a series to be organized in the country to increase awareness of the benefits of eating vegetarian based diets.

A Leading Member of the Vegetarian Association of Ghana (VAG) has expressed concern over the upsurge of reported ailments at the country's hospitals as a result of over-reliance on animal-based diets.

Mad Gloria Asiamah Aryee, the member of VAG, who described the situation as an economic burden to the country's health care system, also called for effective education to reverse the sad trend.

Mad Gloria Aryee was speaking at a conference organized, on Thursday, by the International Vegetarian Union (IVU) in collaboration with VAG in Accra.

The conference was the first of a series to be organized in the country to increase awareness of the benefits of eating vegetarian based diets.

The grand conference is slated to take place from October 30 to November 1 2009 and many health practitioners from many countries as well as the public are expected to participate.

She described the over reliance on animal based diets, on the part of many people, as being responsible for some of the irreversible health risks facing the globe.

Mad Gloria Aryee expressed her worry of the fact that, carbon dioxide gases were emitted excessively into the atmosphere, as a result of increased engagement in animal husbandry and stressed that those emissions disturbed the natural balance in the ecosystem.

She expressed disquiet over the fact that lots of arable lands in the country and in other countries were lost to growing feeds for livestock.

"As a race, humanity is already beginning to experience the negative effects of this lack of adherence to the natural order of living that was meant to sustain the orderly function of the human body," she said.

Mad Gloria Asiamah Aryee said Ghanaians would be healthier and better of economically if they resorted to eating vegetarian based diets.

Mr Nathan Adu, the Founder of VAG, called for a healthy and balanced lifestyle early in life and urged parents and guardians to ensure that they inculcated strict healthy diet early in the minds of their wards.

He recommended vegetarian diet as a means of reducing many sicknesses such as cancer of the colon, heart, liver and other animal-fat related diseases that afflict people who rely heavily on animal diets.

Eleven- year- old Nana Ama Asantewaa, daughter of the founder of VAG, appealed to Ghanaian youths, especially her peers, to eat lots of fruits and vegetables in order to be build an immune system equipped to fight diseases.

She said she had been a vegetarian her entire life and felt so healthy and strong.

"Since I was born, I have never been seriously ill and I know this is because of the healthy food I feed on each day," she said.

Nana Ama, who is a pupil of the St Jude Preparatory School at Dansoman, a suburb of Accra, stressed the importance of eating fruits: "they make my body strong and helps my mind to work well. I love fruits and vegetables because they taste good and help my body to fight diseases."

The VAG is an organization made up of Ghanaian health experts, who meet every second Sunday of the month at Asase Paa Restaurant, located close to the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park in Accra, to organize seminar and workshop on healthy diet for the Ghanaian public.

The organization since its inception has contributed immensely towards educating people on healthy dietary lifestyle. It officially opened its ultra-modern resource centre, which serves as the information hub on vegetarian and vegans' way of living.

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