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In Search of the Ultimate Health Elixir

Thursday March 8 2006
Publicity Release

In Search of the Ultimate Health Elixir on Maori Television

A new series that examines the health of everyday Maori through powerful personal stories premieres with WARRANT OF FITNESS on Maori Television on Tuesday March 28 at 8.00 PM.

The 13-part, half-hour series is produced by Auckland-based production company Faultline Films for Maori Television and presents health information from a uniquely Maori perspective.

The series is presented by television newcomer Curtis Walker (Ngati Porou, Te Whakatohea) who is a medical student on a mission to improve Maori health.

“I am passionate about saving lives, or at least improving them, and I’m off to hit the road to uncover the real health of the nation,” he says.

On the outside, each of the 13 guests on the series look fine yet on the inside, it is a totally different story. Diabetes, asthma, high cholesterol, obesity, heart disease and other silent killers are just a taste of the ailments each person copes with.

“From our experience in making this series, we have learnt that where health is concerned, knowledge brings empowerment and good health is achievable with appropriate available and accessible healthcare.

“Warrant of Fitness is not about short term changes. It is about choosing whaka ora and making a commitment to the future and that of the whanau,” says producer Amanda Jones.

In the first episode (Tuesday March 28 at 8.00 PM), viewers are introduced to Richard Greening (Ngati Kahungunu) who is struggling to regain his independence and come to terms with going blind as a result of unmanaged type 2 diabetes. The programme documents the changes he has had to make in order to cope with his new lifestyle and prevent his diabetes from causing more complications.

Further in the series, we meet Jake Te Tai (Te Arawa) as he tackes obesity and leg ulcers before he can undergo treatment for atrial fibrillation. The series also introduces Te Kiira Parkinson (Te Whanau-a-Apanui/Atihaunui-a-Paparangi) who shares how whanau and a change of attitude helped her overcome depression, leave a violent relationship and shed 20kg. And we meet kaumatua Max Peneha (Te Aitanga Mahaki) who abandoned a dangerously self-indulgent lifestyle and saved his life by joining the kaumatua programme in his hometown of Gisborne.

“The good news is, it’s not too late for these people to change their future – and possibly yours,” says Jones.

WARRANT OF FITNESS premieres on Maori Television on Tuesday March 28 at 8.00 PM.


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