‘Label Restaurant foods for calories and cholesterol,' says doctor
By Diane Philips & Associates
Feb 18, 2018 - 10:43:34 AM

Nassau, Bahamas - What you are serving for lunch could be a coronary, says Darius Bain, M.D., D.M.

“You wouldn’t knowingly serve a loved one a heart attack, but we do it all the time,” said Dr. Bain, who holds an advanced degree in Family Medicine. “There are some deep-seated practices we have as a nation that we seriously need to address.”

Among the first changes – labelling dishes in restaurants, particularly fast food restaurants, to show calorie count, fats, trans-fats and cholesterol.

“They do that in the U.S. and other places and it has not hurt business but what it has done is to encourage fast food restaurants to offer healthier choices,” said Dr. Bain who opened the LiveWell Clinic in Sandyport late last year. “I am convinced that if people saw that a lunch of a cheeseburger, fries and soft drink contains more calories than the average adult should have in an entire day, they might think about getting a salad with grilled chicken instead.”

One of Dr. Bain’s pet peeves – the national dish.

“If you go on TripAdvisor, the national dish of The Bahamas is cracked conch and peas and rice. It may taste good and visitors may think they are having a native experience, but the combination is full of nothing that is good for your health.”

According to Dr. Bain, a segment of the population – particularly those who are younger, better travelled or have studied abroad – are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of diet and healthy eating to well-being, including mortality rates and the overall quality of life.

“We need to redirect our efforts and place those priorities on changing the mindset,” said Dr. Bain, who has been exposed to health care in four countries -- Jamaica, Belize, The Bahamas and the U.S. where he did his internship at Emory University in Atlanta.

“Our culture says that having a drink on a Friday afternoon is okay so you go out under the bridge and meet your friends for a drink and a drink is a case and that is normal behavior. Our culture tells us on Sunday when we get home from church we should have two meats, plus macaroni and cheese and potato salad and cole slaw and we serve such large portions that some people don’t have plates, they have platters and they think that is normal.”

On the flip side, said Dr. Bain, there are people who have almost nothing to eat and for them fast food is a way to get a belly full.

Dr. Bain is also concerned about the rush to fix whatever is wrong with pills.

“It’s all about magic pills and potions,” he said. “When it comes to our health, we are a nation that is undereducated and overmedicated. And we need to change that.”

“I want to be your teacher and help you understand,” says the family medicine specialist who reminds patients whom he considers clients that the word doctor means teacher. “When it comes to health, I want to be your Google, your Wikipedia/ When you have a question, text me, Facebook me. The days of doctors being distant and feared are over. This is a new age and I am glad to be part of it.” 

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