August 2014 Edition was the culmination of our Health & Lifestyle Series. Two fabulous ladies helped tie up loose ends and shake us out of those little comfort zones we cherish.

A woman just has no choice but to make the right healthy choices – Chiugo

When you talk about our life in terms of diet, it requires taking action on our part – Omei



Chiugo Nwangwu is a Microbiology graduate of the University of Lagos and has a Masters in Public Health from the University of Liverpool. She is the project coordinator of the Cervical Cancer Programme of the Society for Family Health ((SFH). She has an interest in counseling and business. For leisure, she enjoys listening to and collecting a wide range of music.

Omei Bongos is a Public Health Professional. She is a volunteer with a physical therapy centre that is concerned with helping people with disabilities improve their capacity to cope with their daily lives. She advocates for increased physical activity as a measure against cardio respiratory illnesses and improving general fitness. Currently working on a personal trainer certification with the American Fitness Professional Association, Omei is a member of Toastmasters International.

Below is the excerpt from our Community Session with Chiugo and Omei. Enjoy.

Chiugo hit it on the nail for us. If we forget everything else, what is the one thing we must leave this place with as far as cervical cancer is concerned?

You have to get screened for cervical cancer. That is the first step to preventing it. We must get screened as women. Especially for women, I’ll say above 25 who are sexually active. Screening is key. And awareness of screening is very low, even within my office. If you ask women; how many of you have screened for cervical cancer? They just shy away and are like, No.

That’s a question you can ask here.

Yeah I was going to ask everyone, just show of hands, who has been screened before, in this lifetime, in your life time before.

(audience reaction) I have. And you know when I went? After listening to Dr. Ayuba in June.

That’s when you went?

I’m telling you. Her session was that impactful.

So you just had to go for it… Yeah. Get screened. Once you know where you stand after screening, then I mean the rest is mainly preventive. So, once you’ve not been screened then you are just living on “what if?” So I think every woman must be screened. Once in this life and then for women who are HIV positive, they are encouraged to screen annually, every year. Why? Mainly because their immune system is suppressed, and cervical cancer has now been linked to one of the opportunistic infections. Now it’s an indicator also of women who are probably living with HIV or AIDs, alongside TB and other fungal infections. So most times, if a woman already has cervical cancer, if you run an HIV test, she probably has it too. That’s why there’s more emphasis on those who are HIV positive to screen annually so that it can be controlled. So that once the lesion and cervix is seen, she can undergo treatment immediately. So I think from the flyers that have gone round, one thing you’d know is, when you go for screening, say you do a pap smear or a VIA, (Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid). If say, you do a VIA with Acetic Acid and the result comes out positive, please it doesn’t mean you have cervical cancer. I have to stress that. It doesn’t mean you have cervical cancer. It just means that you have a lesion or growth on your cervix that if not treated or killed would lead onward in like 10 – 15years to cervical cancer. So those are abnormal. You know what is a cancer? It’s just an abnormal growth that is uncontrolled. So if they do the screening for you and they find that on the cervix, immediately what we offer, I’ll speak for Society for Family Health even if I know that other people will probably have treatment centers. There and then it’s a see and treat. Once they see that, you are advised as women. You can take the decision there to just do your treatment. But most women like to go home, go and consult with their husbands, let them know what they are doing. Because once you are treated with chemotherapy, you can’t have sexual intercourse for six weeks, because the cervix needs to heal because the chemotherapy treatment is a freeze dry technique. You are applying cold heat on the cervix just to freeze that cell. So over the next six weeks the cell melts off and washes off the dead cell there. After six weeks the cervix goes back to normal. So it’s a very easy, cheap procedure. I mean, just to get screened in one of our society is just N500 (five hundred naira) for walk in clients because our donors have subsidized it. So you just walk in. And to treat, if a woman comes out positive, she can get treated for 1000 as opposed to UI. UI does their own, they do their treatment for 7500. And now, no woman should be left to get into cervical cancer stage. I mean, because the duration for cervical cancer takes 10-15 years if not more for it to show itself.

Full blown?

Yes. And there won’t be any symptoms if the woman has the virus. You won’t know. It doesn’t show any sign. So it’s at cervical cancer stage that you just might have some odour coming from the woman, back pains, painful sexual intercourse, I mean bleeding during sex, she’s losing weight, then bleeding in between menstrual cycles, so all that. I mean a 29 year old young lady in the University of Gwagwalada, she has cervical cancer now, living with it and it’s really a hopeless case. So we are advocating that no woman should walk into the clinic without being screened, at least. Because if a woman is going in for, say family planning or a high virginal swap or something, she is already on that couch. So we are trying to integrate cervical cancer for Nigerian women, just look at her cervix, the screening doesn’t even take five minutes. Just clean, paint her cervix and look at it. Once she’s ok you give her her results, continue with her treatment. You may even see if she has STI that you can treat there and then. So that’s what we are gunning for, that’s our goal.

For me, the medical system in the country should be such that once you’ve taken that sample, there are basic tests you should use it for. It’s the same blood, for the sake of public health.

Even though some people will do that, but that’s another topic. Like some lab technicians will do that, because they make more money, but we are trying to integrate prevention services. Just do everything, and don’t let her go, without looking at her cervix. Even while looking at her cervix, we go ahead to do a breast examination because it’s late. Once a woman gets that, it’s likely she’ll develop breast cancer, liver cancer, and onward. Once it’s reached the cancerous stage, it spreads.

Are there foods that make one predisposed to cervical cancer?

No. Not food but I will say categorically that a healthy diet is really key, especially for women. As a woman is aging, her body is losing a lot of nutrients, bone, bone loss, body density, everything. A woman just has no choice but to make the right healthy choices. If you would normally eat a doughnut, I mean, maybe when you were younger, you’ll eat a doughnut like three times in a day, you can just swap that and do an apple, orange, healthy fresh fruits. That would basically, directly improve your immune system and reduce your risk of contracting these diseases, because HPV itself, the virus that leads to cervical cancer is transient, in that the body is able to clear it. Now if your immune system is really low, the body won’t be able to fight all these diseases. We are exposed to all kinds of viruses, bacteria every day but God has made the system such that it fights it itself. So you don’t want to compromise your immune system. That’s what you have, that’s your engine. That’s why we are saying, nutrition, is one of the preventives, very good nutrition, no smoking, tobacco use because that has its own risks. Then reducing multiple partners, like sleeping with different partners. A lot of women will tell you now they are dating this guy this month, that’s serial monogamy.

Serial monogamy?

Yeah that’s what it is. Then next month it’s another guy. In a year, a girl has dated 12 men, the likelihood that she’s been with all of them, slept with all of them is high, probably ten out of twelve. So, if you’re doing that, you are exposing yourself because you don’t know who those men had been with. So we just say it as it is. You, everybody just has to be careful. If you can’t maybe stay with one partner, it’s encouraged, use a condom so that you’re reducing your risk of getting all kinds of infections and STIs. STIs increase your risk of getting HPV, HPV also causes genital wax and that is very common. So these things are really important. Personal hygiene, personal interest in your reproductive health is really key. In itself, if we all remain healthy, maintain a healthy lifestyle, even if every woman who is sexually active has probably contracted the HPV virus, because your immune system is at its top form, you clear it, it will go. It won’t cause anything. But for people who have already compromised that, you know, it’s difficult.

So how often should we do the cervical exam, the pap smear?

We recommend every two years for non HIV positive women. Every two years is fine. So if you’ve done one this year, you do the next one in 2017, just like a routine checkup and that’s it. Every two years.

(audience reaction) So the last time I had mine was 2010, so I’m due?

Yes. You can just walk into any good lab and tell them you want to do a cervical screening. They’ll do it for you. There’s also the issue of inspection with acetic acid. That’s cheaper and also encouraging, because you get your result there and then. Now with pap smear you have to come back two weeks. Most women never want to come back because they are like “hey I don’t want to die o. take the result”.  But the VIA just looks at your cervix, inserts the speculum, exposes it. They wash your cervix with vinegar and they look at it for 2minutes. If there’s no reaction then they tell you all is well. But if there is …they take it from there.

But shouldn’t you, shouldn’t you ideally be patient enough for your health. Get the full result?

That’s ideally. Why we introduced the VIA is really for the vulnerable, the poor people because SFH is pro-poor. Most women cannot afford a pap smear. That’s the truth. So it’s really easy, and I’m happy because even working class women who I’ve come across, they go and take it. It saves them time, saves them the headache.

And they still get accurate results?

Yes. It’s highly sensitive. It picks it immediately. Then it’s also good to note, for mothers who have daughters who are not yet sexually active, there’s a HPV DNA, I mean a HPV vaccine. So I encourage us to give our daughters that as well, from 9 – 13yrs, that’s good. Good private clinics do it. Just ask. I think it costs about N16,000 (sixteen thousand naira) for three doses. So that she’s protected for life.

Ok Omei, you’re the one who says we shouldn’t eat bread and sardine, and pounded yam and, you know when you put those things in bread and fold…(general laughter)

Not necessarily…however, it shouldn’t be a staple, like my daily bread. When you are talking about the area of exercise and dieting, it is better to understand what your goals are because everyone has different goals. You know, am I trying to lose weight? Am I trying to avoid a stroke, high blood pressure, heart disease? Am I trying to stay on my current weight, you know that’s another goal. To keep my weight as I am or am I trying to become (healthier) highly fit, fit for maybe a marathon or something. So everyone has different goals you can see that. When you identify your own goals, then you can now start to make changes, especially in the area of physical activity and nutrition. I’m sure that’s what we’ve been talking about really. So for every goal there is a corresponding recommendation. For instance if you want to avoid the incidence of heart disease, it is recommended that we exercise for 30minutes a day. Learn to exercise.

30minutes a day for heart disease?

For heart disease yeah to avoid the incidence of heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure. People who already have heart conditions, they should engage in the same level of activity but they have to have a doctor’s clearance perhaps starting the exercise programme. That is very important.

What kind of exercise would you recommend for..?

Non-intense exercise.


Walking. Walking is non-intense exercise. You know, taking walks, nothing stressing because weight lifting helps to improve our muscle mass.

Weight lifting is healthy for people with heart disease?

Yes, it’s partly recommended. We’re not in the heavy weight, when you talk of weight lifting, you think of power lifting, but everybody is supposed to do a little weight lifting, especially women because, you know because like she mentioned we lose our muscle mass, our metabolism slows down, you know and we are more prone to adding weight. If you have more muscle mass it helps to break down your food more easily, it helps with digestion, and you burn more calories, and your bones are stronger, your body is stronger.

With weight lifting?

With weight lifting. But it doesn’t have to be really heavy weight, it has to be like, you know 5pounds actually.  If you want to gain a lot of muscle and become like, very tough, you have to progressively increase your weight. But if you want to just stay at a point where you’re toned exactly, where your arms are toned and your bones are strong, your muscles are firm, you can just stick to 5pound of 3kg weight, you know, 3 – 5 kg weight, 2 or 3 days a week. And that’s on non-consecutive days.

That’s for toning?

For toning and for increased strength. 3 times in a week, that’s three times and non-consecutive days (Audience interjection – so the muscle can rest) exactly. Because our muscles get tired and when they get tired they don’t function as well. You know, and they actually grow on the days when we are resting. So…

The muscles grow when we are not exercising?

Well not grow, but they improve. Because this one, our body has different kinds of muscle fibers. There’s a kind of muscle fibers that get tired easily and the kind of muscle fibers that have endurance. So I could walk for a long time with my leg not hurting me, but when we don’t exercise our body is left with this kind of  fiber that get tired easily. When you engage in endurance activities, mostly when in marathon, we say walk for 15minutes non-stop or you may lift 5pounds you know eight times, stop, one set, stop and rest. Do it again, three times, every week, three days a week, every week. You’ll find that your endurance level would increase, it will actually improve. In physical training, there are exercises for strengthening, for the entire body. Assuming you have to lose weight, you can even use your own body weight, there are things that you’ll do to strengthen, lose weight.

Your press up?

Exactly. Your legs, your thighs, squat for your thigh, clamps for your tummy and your back and your core. There are different things you can do to strengthen your entire body. Even without weight. And those kind of exercises they help to increase our strength and the kind of muscle fibers that help us to endure. And then, when I talk about weight loss, the first thing I talked about was avoidance of disease and another one is losing weight. If you want to lose weight, the first important thing you can say first of all is to have a calorie deficit. And that means you have to exercise more than you eat. That’s the only way to lose weight because…

Exercise more than you eat?

Everyone has different goals. For a very obese person, once they start a nutrition programme and a body of workout programme, they’ll start to see result. If you want lose weight, you’ll have to burn more calories than you consume. That’s the general rule. So if you want to lose weight, it has to be a combination of calorie deficit, basically, not eating as much as you normally would and then you incorporate your physical activity programme into your life. And then if you want to stay at the same weight, you’ll have to continue to exercise and have a healthy diet.

Let me ask, there are some people who say if you finish eating you shouldn’t drink water immediately. Is that true or false? I mean what does it really do?

That doesn’t have impact on your weight per se and then digestion. What will be the impact on digestion is the kind of food that you eat, you know. If you eat very oily foods, it can give you heartburn and indigestion and the food comes back. But if you eat high fiber foods, it’ll always help digestion. And water is absolutely necessary. We have to take water after we eat. You know, everyone has needs and everyone’s body is different as well. So if you find something that is wrong with you (if you drink water after you eat), you need to see a doctor for this. It’s so natural for us to drink as we eat.

No I don’t mean not drinking at all. I don’t know if you’ve heard them say you are not supposed to drink water immediately after food. It should be like 20 minutes after food. Especially for dinner.

That doesn’t really have an impact on your weight. Well, partly if you’re bloated I might suggest putting some lemon slices in your water. It burns up your food, so actually, it helps your food to digest and it’s cheap to do that. Sometimes it’s cucumber in your water, or lime water, lemon water.  Actually it helps me, especially the time of my period. I’ve tried it and it helps. For digestion as well…

You know. And if you want to increase your fitness, you know like really become fit, you have to do vigorous activities for 45minutes every day, for four days a week. So to be faithful to every single day, it just has to be consistent and has to be high intensity. Then as far as what we eat, carbohydrates, proteins and fats are actually essential, because they are. So people say I’ll have a low carb diet because I’m trying to lose weight. Carbohydrates are not fattening if you are eating the right kind of carbohydrate. That is the complex carbohydrate, and that’s like whole grains, not white rice. White rice really has no nutrient. It’s like empty calories. We speak of watching weight because we eat a lot of rice. But if you want to eat white rice, you can put some beans on the side as well because beans has a lot of nutrients, you know, high protein and high carbohydrate as well and the good kind of high carbohydrate that will keep you through all the day.

Rice and beans is just fine joor. (General laughter and chatter).

Cut some carrot, some green or something. When I make beans, I put carrot in my beans and green peppers. The bean is like an empty slate, I put whatever I want in my beans. Ginger, garlic, anything I have in my house, I just throw it in my beans and it makes it more interesting.

I just want to find out, I have this friend, she said that when her family is having a meal, her kid has a separate meal. By experience do we think it’s okay for us to have a say in what our kids eat and can’t our kids eat what we eat? Because when I was growing up, what was on the stove is what the whole family eats, despite that you were five, three or twenty-two. You know we just eat together as a whole family.

True. Actually with a traditional family, that’s how it’s been. For instance we didn’t have indomie as children. It is what they put on the table that everybody eats. And the day my mum decides to cook bitter leaf soup, they would swear and say that it was a healthy thing for you. But we won’t touch it. Guess what we will eat? Maybe cereal until that soup is over and out. What she will do is she’ll put it there and maybe make meat or these little things that will entice you in the soup. But if it’s to make an alternative meal, she won’t do it. That’s the soup they are cooking that day, that’s the soup we’re eating that day. So you know…and the advert on TV doesn’t help matters because when you see all the children on TV dancing happily then it’s a problem for the children in the house, because they’ll ask ‘why are these children always happy and you are denying us this same thing?’. (general laughter)

I think it is better treating them more to pasta and after a while they’ll probably lose the taste. It’s better, honestly. Carrot, green peas, all that, it’s still. Otherwise, it’s like there’s no balancing effect. You are just buttering it up. Explore other things.

But it has to be a mass effort, because the last thing we just said. You cannot try to correct it alone in your house, when the children are watching TV and then the indomie, indomie jingle comes up, and…

You know in America now, America is pro-family and they are tilting towards protein because most people in America are obese. Now a child cannot come, like to school in her lunch box with all that burger and stuff. No. They are encouraging them “eat an apple a day”. I’m telling you. So the sooner we in our family units in Nigeria start doing that, the better. You don’t want when your kids are older, they’re out of shape, no, start now.

I think it’s a good time since Chiugo has brought this out to pass out a sample food journal. At least we can do it for ourselves or for our kids. Really this is just an example. Either today or yesterday. Pick one day and write out everything you ate. Fill the other columns too. Fried rice can be in the morning. Just write it so you just know, am I eating because I am bored? Hungry? How and where you eat as well. Anybody wants to share their…

Maybe when we are done you tell us what is the ideal…

 An ideal? Yes, yes.

There is a column for location, why is the location important?

Because it helps to keep track of our eating pattern as well. Do you have a structured eating pattern. Are you eating at home, on the table with your family or are you eating on the go, excessive? It helps us understand our lifestyle and how we can adapt. Now, for high protein, apples have carbohydrate, fiber, yoghurt has fats and protein. And it gives you nutrients. So if you take an ice cream you won’t have any nutrient. At the end of the day you’ll feel tired and not well nourished. But if you have a smoothie and yoghurt, or fried egg or something in the morning, at the end of the day, it’ll give you energy. They are high in protein. So you can have oatmeal or something.

Can you have eggs every day?

It’s not like eggs don’t give you bad cholesterol as much, the bad cholesterol is saturated fat. Saturated fat in form of oils, yes, and margarine as well. Margarine is a no-no.

So what do we eat bread with?

Peanut butter. English Butter too is better for you.

Ok let me make us laugh with mine. This is not so that you analyze o. It is just because I’ve managed to recollect a bit. I take the message completely but because you gave us the assignment; so for my breakfast I had a cup of coffee which is acceptable but I had it with gala. It fills. (general laughter) Of course it was in the house. Then I got to the office. Now my office is beside a shop, they sell gala, I get to the office and I actually pick the gala before I go to my seat. So I ate that gala and I wrote here boredom. Not boredom like I’m bored cos I love my work, mild boredom. Lunch I had egusi and pounded yam and that was because I actually needed nutrients and strength. Abi? So I ate that and I have it here on my list. Ok where I went to eat the egusi they opened this pastry shop inside there and they adorned it with cake and cookies. So I just said let me patronize. So I bought like three different ones because I needed to know which one tasted better. (general laughter). That’s why I write here joy, joy. I ate it. When I went home, ah I had this remaining bread in the fridge and cooked beans, very nice. I didn’t put carrot, because I didn’t know but now that you have told us I’ll be putting. So I warmed it. Then I even warmed the bread with microwave, so it was quite hot. Imagine that! (general laughter). In my estimation it was healthy feeding. Then, you know as I was listening to news later in the evening, I just took yoghurt. So seriously, that was that.

It’s convenient. So can you replace the gala with something? Perhaps at the weekend when you go shopping you stock your fridge ahead of time. It’s very important. Do planning. For someone like you, if you want to gain weight and you want to continue to indulge with galas and things, you have to exercise. Because exercise lowers your blood pressure, it also improves your ecological profile, it helps your bad cholesterol to reduce and your good cholesterol to increase, and it lowers your risk of stroke and diabetes. So you have to exercise. But then I will also recommend you not eating gala every single day. You can eat it maybe once in two weeks or once a month.

Ahhhhh…that’s serious punishment! (general laughter)

It’s not punishment. To have a calorie deficit you exercise more than you eat, so you won’t gain weight. Eat a healthy breakfast though. I’ll prefer you eating gala like in the afternoon for a snack because what you eat in the morning is very important. It sets the tone for the day, your metabolism. Healthy eating in the morning, mostly bread and butter is good but you can add eggs, add a smoothie. I like smoothies a lot. You can make very cheap smoothie. You can just make pineapple, watermelon and pawpaw. Those three things are within. It’s really good. When mangoes were in season, I had a mango smoothie almost every day. Mango has a lot of calories. It improves your skin.

So, what I really wanted to achieve here is to have us do something and take action. Because when you are talking about your life in terms of diet and exercising and weight loss or prevention of diseases, it requires taking action on our part. We’ve talked about our lifestyles a lot here. What we eat, where we work and everybody’s goals and everybody’s actions at the table will be different because they’ll have to be based on their circumstances and how much time they have. You know, most people don’t exercise because they don’t have time. Time is the number one reason. But what can I do? I have another activity for us, it’s a sample behavioral contract. We don’t have to do it right here. We can take it home. I have an example of one, I’ll show us the example and I’ll also give us the empty one. Who can read hers for us? (show of hands and interactive group activity on dieting…)

And I’ll like to say something, especially for us women. I think for us it’s critical because our daughters look up to us indirectly. I have a friend now who is really obese and her really pretty daughter keeps saying, if you just tell her, ah you are going to be like your mum, she would cry, throwing tantrums that no “I don’t want to be fat like mummy”. So your babies are actually watching you. If you decide that you don’t want to be fat, you’re not only doing it for yourself. You are doing it for your daughters, you are doing it for your sons. It’s a process. And the thing I’ve learnt over time is that this food that we eat, they kill. Like, bad food is just bad, they kill. Eventually they’ll just kill you, joint pains, chest. In fact you don’t even want to go there. So we are preaching prevention. Preventive medicine is better than cure. Don’t get to crash stage then they’ll now tell you diabetes, your blood pressure, you have to go on diet for the next one month, you’ll start eating vegetables etc.

And when you talk about the goals, our goals should be very specific. It shouldn’t just be I want to lose weight. It should be perhaps I want to eat a healthy meal, you know. Or I want to have breakfast every day. I want to have a healthy breakfast and list the steps that you’ll actually take to have a healthy breakfast. I’ll go shopping on the weekend ahead of time, my smoothies in the evening.

Apart from smoothie what else would you have to go for a proper breakfast?

A proper breakfast? Bread and eggs. Now if you want to eat eggs everyday I’ll suggest you don’t have the yolk every single time. You can have the yolk like three times a week. And then if you want to make an omelet, you can actually make a good omelet with just white, season well, add some cheese or some onions or yellow peppers. You can add cheese in small quantities, it’s also good for a flat tummy because it’s a probiotic. It helps you create a normal, very good micro-floral in your tummy. So you fight being bloated. Cheese is actually magic. It’s seen as a fat burner. Cheese, yoghurt, they are excellent. So if you have to do daily….

What kind of yoghurt?

Non-fat yoghurt and you can buy those yoghurts, put apples, put berries, you can put almonds, you can put honey toppings on it, so they’ll make it exciting. It may cost you more but in the end you’ll feel better for it. You just have to be creative with your food and don’t look for more. Like what I do, because I’ve been on a weight loss journey for a while, so it’s gradually dropping and dropping. So now, most times on Sunday, I go to the shop. I have my wheat bread, I buy it.

They say it’s not good for all blood groups

It depends. Some people cannot process gluten but you can go off bread if you want. You can do wheat bread, you can try cereal, whole grain cereal; fruit and fibers. You can buy your skimmed milk, then you can have oats. Oats are like staple. But one thing I’d say, a healthy diet, it runs the risk of getting boring but you consciously have to spice it up, like what I was doing this week. In my oats I was putting bananas. Fresh bananas or apples, it’ll blend. No sugar. You’ll just love it and once you finish eating you feel a boost unlike if you eat a fat rich diet, like if you eat a fatty food.

But you can add milk to it?

Yes if you like. But me I don’t like milk so I don’t add. But you can add your own milk. You can add skimmed milk, you can add low fat. Some people do their cereals with yoghurt. It’s so nice.

For Nigeria, we eat a lot of rice, so what should we substitute for white rice?

The brown rice. It’s tasty. Whenever I cook my white rice, rice and stew. I cook the beans first, but when  the beans is getting soft I add my white rice. Normal Nigerian white rice. Rice and beans combo.  More beans than rice. I do the rice and beans together, it flavors the rice with the beans flavor. And it usually tastes better. Then sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are excellent. You can bake them in the oven. They are high in fiber. They are really good. Low saturated fat. And they are cheap. Try it when you boil it with fish stew. Boiled is nice. Honestly boiled is nice. But its better when you boil and then you put it on the oven so its crispy. What I do is I boil it, then I put it on my oven tray with some olive oil on top, for like 20minutes and its crispy. And it’s really nice.

I want to ask, about the egg yolk. You said if you’re going to be eating egg every day. So what about for a child?

Children can eat all day. If you want to eat like after 8pm maybe just eat like fruit, veggies, or yoghurts, or just drink tea.

Do you notice that at night you sweat? I don’t know if you’ve noticed? You are very uncomfortable. Do you know why? Because your body is trying to digest while in sleep state. So it can’t do much. You find some people start sweating, some people start belching, some people start having their food come up, and you wake up groggy because your food is still there. Then in the morning you still eat again. You are not giving your liver a break, you are not giving your kidney, your digestive system any break. So it’s working 24hours. That’s why we now have these mop-ups, all these add up, and those are the hardest to lose. You know.

For babies, this thing you said about the food coming out happens to my baby when she eats in the night. She sleeps off minutes later. But then sometimes, maybe after 30minutes she just starts coughing and then is choking. So what do I do?

Let her, rock her for a while. Let her just be, for like, because her metabolism is fast, so she can just be awake for like 40minutes. Just rock her on a chair. Distract her. Don’t let her fall asleep. She may choke and that’s it. So try that. I have a friend whose colleague in the UK, I think the baby died from choking. So it’s very risky. So if you know you want her, it’s best to let her eat when she’s hungry but let her be awake for a while.

Great. So that’s Chiugo and Omei for us. Thank you very much for spending time this evening with us.

Chiugo & Omei: Thank you