Malaysia and Malaysians are in the midst of a chronic health crisis with a whopping 9.6 million people have high blood cholesterol level, 6.1 million having hypertension and 3.5 million Malaysians having diabetes; and more than 100,000 people suffering from cancer each year, with these being just the reported numbers.
It is believed that more than half of those living with NCDs like diabetes and high cholesterol level were not even aware of their health problem .
The National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) 2015 that was released recently shows that the rise in non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as elevated cholesterol levels, diabetes, obesity and cardio-vascular disease is closely linked to unhealthy behaviours towards food and exercise .
Shockingly the Health Ministry survey showed that 94% of Malaysian adults do not eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables, when fibre has been shown to be essential to a healthy balanced diet.
The old adage of ‘prevention is better than cure’ still rings true, and a fibre rich diet may hold the key in prevention as well as managing some of the health problems.
Attention to consumer nutrition and well-being is a core endeavour at Guardian, the largest pharmacy, health and beauty retail chain in Malaysia.
In response to the worrying Malaysian health profile, Guardian has introduced the functional, convenient and affordably priced Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ to help Malaysians get the fibre they need for better health.
Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ is a nutrition and fibre-rich combination of imported Swedish oat bran powder that has more than 30% oat beta-glucan.
The product is a trans-fat free food, without colouring and suitable for vegetarians. It dissolves in luke-warm water for a fibre-rich drink with a pleasing roasted grain taste that helps to fill you up for longer.
Each serving contains more than 30% oat beta-glucan.
High blood cholesterol is one of the risk factors for heart disease, although it does not show any symptoms. Many people with high blood cholesterol are unaware that their cholesterol level is too high.
The amount of oat beta-glucan (soluble fibre) recommended for the cholesterol lowering effect is 3gm per day .
Ms. Elyse Lee, Senior Regional Business Manager, Group Health & Beauty Private Label, The Dairy Farm Group said, “High blood cholesterol afflicts almost half of Malaysians adults, which is worrying. Guardian Malaysia looked at what we could towards helping bring about positive change. This lead us to beta-glucan that has been proven to reduce cholesterol. It also alerted us to the need for more fibre in daily diets for better health. Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ easily fits into one’s daily routine with convenience and affordability”.
“With the Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+, consumers have the benefits of beta-glucan from oats, chia seeds, barley and brown rice for their general well-being. Consumers will appreciate that it is priced within reach for a high quality, trusted and certified oat bran with nutritious mixed grain powder for their daily dietary needs,” Ms. Lee.
It can also be used in smoothies, beverages, as a topping for salads and yoghurt, as a coating for fried and roasted meats and vegetables as well as a thickener in soup and porridge, without losing its nutritional value and ensuring better daily fibre intake.
Now you can consume the required amount of beta-glucan with Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ in a easy way to address a major health concern – high cholesterol level.
Ms. Indra Balaratnam, Founder and Consultant Dietitian, The Food Expert Clinic shared the benefits of barley, oats, chia seeds, and brown rice, as well as presenting four simple recipes that can also work as a healthier option of their food intake and need to include more fiber in their diet.
“Fibre is an integral but often overlooked part of a healthy diet. Current lifestyles that are heavy on highly processed foods, and low on exercise are partly to blame for the state of health in Malaysia. As a dietitian, I recommend a balanced diet that consist of more whole foods as it retains more of its natural nutrients and fiber. It is estimated that majority of adult Malaysians, at best only, manage to meet half of the Ministry of Health recommended daily dietary fiber intake of 25 grams per day for good health. Moreover, it is estimated up to 94% of adults do not get their recommended daily allowance of fruit and vegetables, which are a food source of important nutrients and dietary fiber. So, a good starting point to eating healthier would be to consume more fibre-rich foods, such as wholegrains, fruit, vegetables, legumes, beans, nuts and seeds” Ms Indra said.
“Studies have shown that fibre plays a positive role in stabilising blood sugar levels which can be of help to those with pre-diabetes or diabetes . It is beneficial in weight management for the feeling of fullness it provides . And there is scientific backing to what our mothers advised that more fibre would help in regulatating bowel movement . Constipation has been linked to colon cancer, so the need for fibre is clear,” she added.
Ms Indra explained some of Malaysians’ favorite dishes such as roti canai, nasi lemak and char koay teow were high in calories while being low in fibre. She suggested finding creative ways to get a healthier intake of calories.
“Many local favorites are high in calories and fat. You can still indulge once a week, but a balanced, fibre-dense meal will have a more positive impact on overall health. While oat bran powder is healthful, we should resist the temptation to add sugar to it. A healthier approach is to add fresh fruit, yoghurt, low fat milk, unsweetened cocoa or unsweetened fruit juices. Find recipes that work within your taste, available time and your budget,” she advised.
The National Stroke Association of Malaysia (NASAM) has two objectives. One is to provide rehab services to stroke survivors so that they can return to as normal a life as possible and the other objective is to promote public awareness that stroke is a preventable disease. NASAM has more than 5,000 members with 600 of them coming for rehab therapy on a daily basis throughout all our nine centres.
High cholesterol is one of the risk factors for stroke with others being hypertension, diabetes, irregular heart beat, physical inactivity, obesity, smoking and high alcohol intake.
Guardian will be contributing RM 10,000 worth of Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ to the members of NASAM as a contribution towards helping them in controlling high blood cholesterol levels.
According to Sylvia Chong, General Manager of NASAM, high incidence of heightened blood cholesterol levels among Malaysians, with 1 out of every 2 persons affected, is cause for concern.
“While the heightened cholesterol levels in our population could be due to many factors, some of which we can control through our diet to lower cholesterol. We appreciate that Guardian is assisting our members to achieve a healthier lifestyle, and aid them in their journey of recovery, while helping us in raising awareness of stroke,” said Sylvia Chong.
Pricing and Availability
Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ is available nationwide at all Guardian outlets and e-store at https://online.guardian.com.my. The recommended retail price of Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ (500g) is RM 49.90.
In conjunction with the launch, Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ (500g) will be retailing at a promo price of RM42.41 per tin from 23rd June to 27th July 2016. Collect six plastic lids with ‘Guardian Nutrient Function’ stickers to redeem one free tin of Guardian Mixed Grains & Oats 30+ (500g), terms and conditions apply. Offer valid until 28th September 2016.