…Says they play crucial role in prevention, control of health issues
The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Bayelsa State Governor on Tourism, Dr. Piriye Kiyaramo has said that Traditional Complimentary Alternative Medicine (TCAM) practitioners have a crucial and yet underappreciated role in the prevention and control of health issues, as well as in addressing many community healthcare needs.
Dr. Kiyaramo stated this during a health tourism roundtable, organised by his office, in collaboration with the Bayelsa State Desk Officer for Traditional and Complementary Alternative Medicine (TCAM) as part of activities to commemorate this year’s World Tourism Day with the theme: “Tourism and Green Investments” at the Ernest Ikoli Press Centre of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Yenagoa on Wednesday.
He tasked Traditional and Complimentary Alternative Medicine (TCAM) practitioners in the state to invest more in organic herbs cultivation, adding that herbs have been used historically all over the world for healing purposes for centuries, noting that making a commitment to promote environmentally friendly projects and practices can be more than investing in green businesses.
The governor’s aide informed that the health tourism roundtable which was first in the series was meant to promote medical tourism education among traditional and complimentary alternative medicine practitioners and tourism industry stakeholders with a view to attracting health tourists to Bayelsa State.
Dr. Kiyaramo who described the theme: “Tourism and Green Investments” as apt to the practiceof traditional medicine, informed that without the application of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, organic plants rely more on their own defense systems when battling pests and diseases and grow deep roots to extract nutrients from the soil and that plants grown from organic seed were typically stronger and more adapted to thrive and grow under organic gardening practices.
“Organic seeds are harvested from certified organic crops and therefore are not treated with fungicides like most conventional seeds. Green investment can begin with a few easy changes or additions to whatever you are already doing, such as growing and using herbs, is an excellent green investment, where one grows a variety of herbs for culinary, medicinal, pet, home, and garden use.
“Eco-investing or green investing is a form of socially responsible investing where investments are made in companies that support or provide environmentally friendly products and practices. These companies encourage new technologies that support the transition from carbon dependence to more sustainable alternatives.
“Green investments refers to investment activities that focus on projects or areas committed to protecting the environment, such as reducing pollution, using fewer fossil fuels, conserving natural resources, and developing alternative energy sources”, Dr. Kiyaramo stated.
In her remark, the Bayelsa State Desk Officer of Traditional and Complementary Alternative Medicine (TCAM), Dr. Tarelah Prefa said the complementary medicine or alternative medicine refer to a broad set of health care practices that are not part of that a country’s own tradition or conventional medicine and are not fully integrated into the dominant health-care system.
Dr. Prefa reiterated that: “It is high time we started training our taste buds to take in organic nutrient densed food as medicine now, If we failed to do that, we will have to take medicine as food later in life… “Herbal medicine is the use of plants and plant extracts to treat disease. Many modern drugs were originally extracted from plant sources, even if they are now made synthetically. Whereas conventional medicine now tries to use only the active ingredients that non toxic.
“Generally, plants used in traditional medicines have been considered safe as a result of the long history of use in the treatment of diseases based on knowledge accumulated over several centuries. In many cultural settings, toxic fatalities have been rare due to the systematic selection of medicinal plants for use, “Dr. Prefa said.
It will be recalled that traditional medicine has been the trusted, acceptable, affordable, and accessible source of health care for African populations for centuries. Still today, 80% of the continent’s population relies on traditional medicine for their basic health needs.
“African traditional medicines (ATMs) or therapies are widely used on the continent to meet healthcare needs because of ease of access, low cost, and cultural acceptance. However, there is a paucity of clinical evidence on their safety, efficacy, and quality to support their use in general.
“Traditional medicine is the knowledge, skills and practices based on the theories, beliefs and experiences indigenous to different cultures, used in the maintenance of health and in the prevention, diagnosis, improvement or treatment of physical and mental illness.
Green investments can be classified into various categories, including renewable energy, energy efficiency and conservation, sustainable agriculture and forestry, sustainable transport, and waste management and recycling.