KUALA LUMPUR,. Malaysians have a sweet tooth and it shows most clearly during festivals in the food we make and eat, often in large quantities.
As Malaysians prepare for Deepavali this Tuesday and visions of lovely laddoo, sweet mint tea and scrumptious murukku dance in our heads, Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad offered his greetings in Tamil and a sombre call against being bested by the 21st-century “evil” — sugar.
“Vanakkam, I am Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, your health minister,” the Parti Amanah Negara leader popularly known as Dr Dzul said in Tamil.
“I hope you can try and lessen your intake of sweet delicacies during Deepavali.
“We wish you a very happy Deepavali,” he added in the 25-second video produced by the Health Ministry.
Malaysia has long coped with various health-related diseases linked to unhealthy diets and high sugar intake.
A 2016 study by University Malaya found diet-related diseases as the country’s main health problem.
Malaysia is also in the top 10 most obese nations, according to the World Health Organisation.