On Sunday, Forest ward Councillor Faiz Yunis (pictured above first left) and I attended a seminar at our local mosque, the Noor Ul Islam Trust, to discuss health issues affecting our South Asian community.
Coronary Heart Disease is a serious illness affecting thousands of South Asian people around the world. Indeed, many health experts believe the current situation is fast becoming an epidemic.
Noor Ul Islam invited well regarded Cardiology Consultant, Dr Sandy Guptha, (pictured speaking below) who is based at local Whipps Cross University Hospital, to give a talk to its congregation, and invited local councillors, about practical ways to lower the South Asian communities’ high rates of heart disease.
Dr Guptha informed the audience that every two minutes someone dies of a heart attack and that the largest cause of the 58 million deaths, taking place in Britain every year, is heart disease. Dr Guptha also told us that people of South Asian origin are 40-50 times more likely to die from heart disease than other ethnic origins – whereever in the world they live.
Focusing on preventing these deaths is crucial and so the mosque also invited Meena (pictured below), formally Chief Dietician to the organisation Diabetes UK, to share her expert knowledge of nutrition.
Attendees were also advised that they could give up smoking, another major cause of heart disease, with the assistance of the Asian ‘Quitline’, which they can call on telephone number 0800 00 22 88.
I am very pleased that I was invited to attend the seminar as I now have a much greater insight into this important health issue, affecting hundreds of South Asian residents in my ward.