2015 World Consumer Rights Day

Consumer rights are the rights the customer has to be informed, safe, heard, choose and make inputs to the producers of goods and services they use. These rights are protected by laws and organizations.

2015 World Consumer Rights’ Day considers a subject matter that is linked to four of the ten biggest causes of death worldwide: high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol level-these are mainly caused by poor diets. The theme is ‘Healthy Diets’. Diet related diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and some cancers are becoming more prevalent all over the world. This is definitely not unrelated to the availability, accessibility and affordability of processed foods high in fat, sugar and salt.

Healthy diets provide the body with essential nutrients and come from plant or animal sources. They also supply the body with energy needed for daily activities; improving or maintaining the quality of life. Attributes of healthy diets includes:

·         Reduced sugar content: Excess sugar intake is a risk factor for obesity, type II diabetes, heart diseases and rising rates of metabolic syndrome.

·         Reduced salt content: This has been identified as one of the most cost-effective ways of improving population health outcomes. Regular eating of excess salt is a risk factor for developing high blood pressure which is the biggest cause of cardiovascular disease. WHO rates high blood pressure as one of the most important causes of premature deaths worldwide. Daily recommended intake of salt is 6g.

·         Reduced fat content: Fats could thicken blood vessels resulting in atherosclerosis. Excess intake could cause obesity, heart failures, brain injury etc.

·         Adequate water: Water is the best source of fluid the body requires. It helps the body carry out its metabolic activities effectively.

·         Free of poisonous and carcinogenic substances from foods and cookware. They are risk factors for cancers and organ failures.

·         Free of contaminated foods. They could cause worm infestations, diarrhea and other illnesses.

·         Consists of fruits and vegetables. They supply the body with vitamins and minerals necessary for metabolism.

Therefore, consumers’ international (the global voice for consumers) has called for restrictions of food marketing to children, nutrition labelling, provision of tools to promote healthier eating and provision of better food in schools and public institutions.




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