Fight the inner demons through preventive health this Dussehra • The Perfect Health Mela 2017 will lay emphasis on preventive health among other things • Many diseases are an outcome of bad lifestyle habits such as lack of physical activity and eating unhealthy food, and should be done away with New Delhi, 29 September 2017: It is yet again that time of the year when the entire country rings in the festival season. Among the many festivals celebrated is Dussehra, which holds significance as it marks the triumph of good over evil. Symbolically, there are some modern-day demons in the form of diseases plaguing us today. In this festival season, the need of the hour is to triumph over these demons by embracing preventive health and adopting a healthy lifestyle. The Perfect Health Mela (PHM) 2017 to be held from 4th to 8th October at Talkatora Stadium, New Delhi which will be inaugurated by Honorable Chief Minister of Delhi, Shri Arvind Kejriwal, will provide the perfect platform to discuss and understand more about all aspects of preventive health. Some of the so-called demons include stress, smoking, alcohol, bad diet, lack of physical activity, and living in denial about our mental and physical health. The PHM aims at spreading mass health awareness using entertainment as a medium. The theme this year is “Digital Health” and will focus on ways to wellness, health awareness, roots of ancient Indian medicine, wellness through music, dancing and health, and saving the girl child, among other things. Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, National President Indian Medical Association (IMA) and President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Dr RN Tandon – Honorary Secretary General IMA in a joint statement, said, "Taking steps towards preventive health assumes utmost significance in today’s times, also because the burden of non-communicable diseases is on the rise.PHM aims to tackle some of these issues, will offer health checkups to people at no cost, and create awareness on how to prevent these conditions through changes in their lifestyle. The theme this year is ‘Digital health’, which encompasses using technology to empower people in tracking, managing, and improving their own health and that of their near and dear ones. This will help them live better and more productive lives, and bring about improvements in the societal health at large.” The PHM caters to people from all age groups and all walks of life. It showcases activities across categories such as health education seminars, check-ups, entertainment programs, lifestyle exhibitions, lectures, workshops, and competitions. The Mela is attended by over 200 organizations each year including those from the state and central government, PSUs, and leading corporates. Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, said, “This Dusshera, we must take a pledge to eliminate evils like smoking and drinking from our lives. We must restrict the consumption of food containing high levels of trans fat, sodium, and refined sugar. It is important to deal with stress through a holistic approach and remove anger and negativity from our lives. Most lifestyle diseases are preventable and manageable only when necessary precautionary measures are taken. We must work towards beating obesity, heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes. Only when we do all this will the true meaning of victory of good over evil be achieved. Some preventive health tips one can follow are given below. • Avoid stress by taking short breaks at regular intervals whenever working at the office or even at home. Eat foods like brown bread for carbohydrates instead of white bread, oranges and lemons for vitamin C and spinach for magnesium. A healthy diet and sufficient sleep help in releasing chemicals like serotonin, which reduce stress. • Excessive smoking aggravates blood pressure, increases heart rate, and reduces the supply of the oxygen to the brain. You should immediately quit this habit for a disease-free life. • Quit alcohol as it can worsen heart problems and cause cirrhosis of the liver. It also triggers obesity and depression. • A balanced diet is key; consume healthy meals, which have the required nutritional benefits your body needs to function efficiently. Consuming small but frequent meals, which contain a sufficient quantity of fruits and vegetables, is important. One should also reduce the intake of high trans fat, sugar, and sodium laden food. • Exercise daily; include a 5-minute brisk walk and a 10-minute stretching in your things-to-do list whenever you get time. Regular exercise also helps keep a check on hypertension and obesity.