Thiruvananthapuram: As part of its comprehensive efforts to help fight lifestyle diseases among various age groups, the Kerala Health Department has set up a Body Mass Index (BMI) unit at the Health Directorate here. The unit, which helps to measure the body weight and height and in the calculation of the BMI, has been set up on a pilot basis.
Health Minister Veena George said BMI is an internationally accepted screening tool and the newly set-up unit would help individuals find out their fitness themselves.
If the project is successful, the BMI units would be established in all institutions, factories and workplaces across the state, she said.
Mental stress, food habits and lack of proper diet are among the factors which trigger lifestyle diseases, she said, adding that people can take preventive measures after assessing their fitness and calculating BMI through such units.
Noting that the Health Department is making elaborate efforts to combat lifestyle diseases, the minister said all people, above 30 years of age, are being screened by health workers visiting their homes across the state.
Free diagnosis and treatment is provided by the department to those who need it, she said, adding that the BMI unit to carry out self-assessment of fitness was set up as part of the mission, the minister said.
“In the past six weeks of launching the campaign, over 8.50 lakh people have been screened at home for lifestyle diseases,” George added.