Wednesday 28 August 2019 4:31pm
Meg Christie in her winter garden
When Meg Christie saw an advertisement in the CDHB’s CEO Update newsletter asking for healthy volunteers for a study called INSPIRE, she jumped at the chance to take part.
“I was curious about my own health and wanted to contribute to medical research,” she explained, “I’m not asked to do anything too horrendous – only give some blood once a year, blood pressure and the body composition analysis. That part is very pleasing, since it shows I am 15 years younger than my actual age of 58!”
Meg puts the impressive figure down to a conscious effort to be fit. Following a serious road-bike accident that prevented her from exercising for several months, Meg, a health promoter with the Canterbury District Health Board, now enjoys yoga, running and is back cycling.
In addition, Meg keeps fit in the garden. Pruning fruit trees is a particular talent.
“We have 40 fruit trees on our 2,023sqm section in Beckenham. They are very old heritage trees, such as feijoa, plum, fig, apple and pear.”
The garden is home to 37 varieties of vegetables including broccoli, silverbeet, cauliflower, celery and white carrots.
Meg and her husband, John, divide up the tasks between them but see time spent in the garden as recreation and “a natural gym”.
Eating well and being active is essential for overall health. It wards off heart and other disease such as diabetes, which is where the INSPIRE study comes in.
INSPIRE tests a new potential marker of insulin and pancreas function. Discovered by, scientists at the CHI, the insulin single peptide (INSsp) marker compares insulin production in healthy volunteers with those in the study who have or are at risk of developing diabetes. Diabetes can lead to many other health issues, including cardiovascular disease.
Meg is pleased to be contributing to this important study, “Being part of medical research is important. I get something out of it, by having my health regularly monitored, as well as giving to the body of knowledge. I highly recommend taking part in a study. The staff take very good care of you. And I highly recommend being active and eating well – it’s a great foundation for health.”
Paula de Roeper
Christchurch Heart Institute Communication Manager
Tel +64 27 316 0571