Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad turns 93 years old today (July 10) and his stamina in his duties as Prime Minister continues to fascinate Malaysians and foreigners alike.
Mahathir has hit the ground running ever since he was sworn in as Malaysia’s seventh prime minister in May, shouldering the heavy responsibility of helming the country with as much vigour as he did when he was prime minister the first time around.
Many have been keen to know what keeps him going, so much so that a photograph of him having a meal with a particular multivitamin product on the table drew much attention and it wasn’t long before the supplement was reported to be out of stock at pharmacies.
Mahathir has been more than willing to share his “secret”. He said it was important to maintain an active lifestyle even after retirement.
“I would prefer to rest, of course, but I would like to advise people not to rest when they grow old,” he said when queried during a recent trip to Tokyo on how he remained healthy.
Mahathir, who has the distinction of being the oldest prime minister in the world, explained that muscles would deteriorate if they were not used.
“If you lie down all the time, the muscles (eventually) cannot even carry your weight, you cannot stand, you cannot walk. So it’s not good when you are old (that) you just lie down and do nothing,” he said, pointing out that it was the same with a person’s brain.
“If you don’t use your brain, you don’t think, you don’t solve problems, you don’t read, you don’t write, the brain regresses and you become senile… so always be active,” said Mahathir who was born on July 10, 1925.
In an interview with a local English newspaper, Mahathir underlined the importance of not overeating – an advice, he said, was given by his late mother.
“My mother told me that when the food is nice, stop,” he said, admitting that it would be difficult at first but it was easy after some time.