Ghanaians have been advised by a dietician at the Meridian Medical Center, Forzia Baidoo, to avoid consuming fermented fish, also known as momoni in the Akan language.
Momoni is fish left to ferment in tropical heat for six to 10 hours, salted for 1-2 days, and sun-dried, according to the Oxford Reference Dictionary.
Ms Baidoo warned that there is a strong link between the intake of salty fish foods such as momoni, kako and koobi and kidney diseases.
Ms Baidoo explained that while these fish add flavour to food, they do not provide any nutritional benefits.
“There are certain foods that we do eat in Ghana here like the putrified fishes, the ones we call momoni, kako, and kobi," she said in an interview on the GTV Breakfast Show yesterday.
"They are all high in salt, so when you are consuming them, try to consume them in minimal amounts. They add flavour to the food but they do not add any nutrition to the food. They are dangerous flavours and cause a lot of harm to the kidney”, she said.
She cautioned Ghanaians to consume them in minimal amounts as they are high in salt and can cause harm to the kidneys.
The kidneys play a vital role in filtering waste from the human body and excreting excess water while maintaining electrolyte balance. Despite its significance, kidney disease is the 10th leading cause of death worldwide.
The World Health Organization reported that Ghana recorded over 4,000 deaths from kidney disease in 2020.
Ms. Baidoo further disclosed that kidney disease does not present symptoms at the beginning unless up to 90% of kidney function is lost.
She encouraged Ghanaians to adopt a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, legumes, animal and plant protein foods, and to drink plenty of water to maintain good health.