BROUGHT together yet again for a mutual cause, Digestive Health Malaysia (DHM) and VITAGEN Healthy Digestion Programme (VHDP) collaborated to educate and empower Malaysians on digestive health for World Digestive Health Day 2019 on June 25.

Attended by Datuk Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan, Prof Dr Raja Affendi Raja Ali, Dr Lee Hock Bee, Dr Tee E Siong and Poh Eng Lip, the media panel session explored digestive health issues in Malaysia, with moderation by emcee Adrian Seet.

Warning that with the high prevalence of digestive problems, disorders and diseases in the country, DHM Chairman Datuk Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan argued that gut health should be on the national agenda because colorectal cancer ranks so highly in the country; it is the No. 1 cancer amongst men, and No. 2 with women.

Healthy lifestyle practices include having good dietary habits, being physically active or exercising regularly, practising good sleep routines and abstaining from bad habits (e.g. smoking). Such habits can help reduce stress to your digestive health and also reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.

Reaffirming VITAGEN’s stance, VITAGEN general manager Poh Eng Lip said, “As Malaysia’s No. 1 cultured milk drink, we are delighted to support expert professional bodies such as DHM to empower the public towards better digestive health.”

At the event, both DHM and VHDP launched their “Guard Your Gut with Probiotics & Early Detection” campaign in conjunction with WDHD 2019. The campaign will see a concerted effort by both parties to spread the message of guarding the gut, as well as going for early screening for colorectal cancer, and the merits of probiotics.

“In addition to co-organising the WDHD celebrations and roadshows across the country, we are also sponsoring and distributing stool test kits to the public,” Poh said.

The stool test kit is used to test for blood in the stool, one of the possible symptoms of colorectal cancer.

VHDP has worked closely with DHM for many years, and will also add a new “kindergarten adoption programme” to its activities as well.

This programme aims to inculcate good eating habits in children from a young age, with the hope that such habits stay with them for a lifetime.

This will be done via scrapbook activities, whereby nutritionists and teachers will guide the children and monitor their progress. Free bottles of VITAGEN will also be supplied in this programme.