The Good Life
I’m always excited going back to Ghana. Love the weather, seeing old school mates, mama and the rest of the family. But somehow I always dread the first meeting with mama. She would look at me and say- “Ato you haven’t been eating well, you’ve lost weight”. Because of this, I always put myself on a fattening diet about a week before I go to Ghana. But this plan has never really worked. Most of the time its either I’m too lazy or too busy to stick to this eating routine. I’ve been to Iceland to stock up on the junkiest 2 minutes microwave meals I could lay my hands on. But they are still sat in the freezer and I’ve got only a few days before I see her.
I think I should point out I have not got a small physique. I have got pretty toned up muscles and I would want keep it that way. So why does she want me to put on some weight? For most in the Ghanaian society, putting on excessive weight is a sign of good living. As bizarre as it sounds I do not think this is far from the truth. It is the one with a fat wallet that can afford to buy and consume more than what his body requires. The not-so-well-off on the other hand will eat just about enough to sustain them. But this notion of fatness as a sign of good living seems to be waning away. People have become conscious of what they eat. But this has not saved the well-off from obesity.
With the growth in the economy and all that, more Ghanaians are at risk of obesity and its associate diseases more than ever. People are spending more time at work than ever before and so are turning to fast food establishments for their lunch and dinner. This is made even worse by the fact that for most Ghanaians the word “exercise” does not feature anywhere in their daily routine. So whiles obesity might be a sign of good living in Ghana, it’s also a sign of poor health. So let’s start taking a good look at what we eat. The greatest wealth, they say, is health.
By Maclean Arthur