Go natural

Sineva, left, Grace and Dr John Fatiaki. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

ALWAYS try and purchase foodstuff in its natural unprocessed state and take advantage of local produce.
This is the message from Dr John Charles Fatiaki.

Originally from Motusa in Rotuma, Dr Fatiaki resides at Muanikau, Ratu Sukuna Rd with his wife Sineva and they have eight children.

The 60-year-old operates his own medical clinic known as the Epworth Clinic and is also the president of the Fiji College of General Practitioners.

He attained his Bachelor in Medicine Science from the University of Tasmania and his DSM with Distinction at the Fiji School of Medicine.

Dr Fatiaki was the panel physician and medical officer of the Australian High Commission, New Zealand High Commission, British High Commission, US Embassy, France Embassy, Tuvalu High Commission, Papua New Guinea High Commission and the Canadian High Commission.

He was the Maritime Safety Authority, Land Transport Authority, Fiji National Provident Fund, Pacific Energy, CMLA, Fiji Care, QBE Health and Bank of the South Pacific’s accredited panel doctor.

This week he shares his shopping tips. Dr Fatiaki shops for 12 family members which is done two to three times per week.

Dr Fatiaki says the family prefers to do their shopping at IGA NewWorld Damodar City Centre, MaxVal-u Flagstaff and Cost U Less simply because they are close to their home with ample parking space and a wide range of products available and reasonably priced.

He said the family groceries shopping were usually done by his wife and his two youngest daughters Maria and Grace with a weekly budget of $400 to $500.

Their groceries list includes rice, olive and VCO oil, fruit and vegetables, meat, eggs, dairy products and condiments and spices.

“There is an old saying “You are what you eat” so extreme emphasis is placed on healthy choices because of the concerns about the very high incidence of NCDs and poor health in our country at present,” Dr Fatiaki said.

He said shoppers should always buy fresh fruits, vegetables and root crops.

“Fresh is always best and therefore one should purchase fruits, vegetables, root crops and meat to be consumed within days rather than store in a refrigerator and consumed later.

“Buy fresh vegies and fruits from the many roadside markets and stalls as they are usually cheaper, freshly harvested and grown organically with minimal processing and without the use of pesticides, weedicides and fertilisers.

“Buy meat that is sourced from animals bred in Fiji on natural pasture such as beef, Fiji mutton and junglee murgi chicken and ducks and try and avoid the processed meat products such as poultry, sausages, tinned meat and tinned fish except for occasoional use.”

Dr Fatiaki said fish and seafood were to be purchased from fish markets and roadside stalls and should be part of a family’s weekly diet.

He said shoppers should take advantage of the specials advertised with the newspaper daily.

“Always try and purchase foodstuff in its natural unprocessed state. Take advantage of local produce eg. dalo, yams, cassava, mandarins, kavika, watermelons, bananas, pineapples, soursop, avocados, duruka, and other foods that are cheap and widely available when in season. Base one’s diet on a whole food, plant based diet with meat, dairy and processed products been reduced to avoid the risk of NCDs.”

Dr Fatiaki said plastics should be banned and shoppers should take their own reusable shopping bags.