Meet the medical consultant who is changing men’s lives through Twitter
Eric Amunga, famously known as @Amerix on Twitter, is a Reproductive Medicine Specialist, fat loss coach and men’s health consultant. He has gained popularity on the social media site for starting the #MasculinitySaturday hashtag where he advises men on a number of pertinent issues regarding relationships and other aspects of life. He is also very vocal on matters of personal health having successfully battled obesity.
You have a huge following on Twitter and use the platform to offer advice to men, especially on Saturday. In a nutshell, what is #MasculinitySaturday, how did it start and why?
#MasculinitySaturday is a space for men. It is where men gather to share their challenges and rediscover their gender roles. #MasculinitySaturday started in January 2019 when a follower sent me a private message that he was on the verge of depression because his wife disrespected him. I reached out to him and helped him overcome the challenge. It is from this incident that I discovered men are struggling to cope up with themselves.
Did you envision it would become popular on Twitter?
Definitely I had the vision that it will attract an audience of men. Surprisingly, women are actively engaged in promoting its popularity. The reason is attributed to the fact that women today feel lonely and abandoned by their men despite being in a relationship with them. Women follow #MasculinitySaturday to understand their men while men follow the conversation to be better leaders.
You also use Twitter to advocate for people to exercise to lose weight and live better lives. Why did you start doing so? Was it out of experience?
Two years ago I struggled with obesity and inexplicable metabolic fatigue. One day while squatting to change the tires of my car, I suffered acute back pain. When I went to an orthopedic surgeon for treatment, he told me to go lose weight. I was 117kgs. I never looked back. I lost 40kgs in seven months. The experience was burdensome and torturous at the start; I almost gave up but I was resilient. I pressed on until I began seeing small changes. The results kept me pushing further until I reached my periodic targets.
You have publicly talked about how you transformed your life through exercise. Take us through that.
Regular exercises are therapeutic. They kick you into a journey of transformation. Exercises test your mental and physical frames. They teach you to face challenges with herculean mindset. Once exercises become part of your routine, nothing can knock you down.
The biggest achievement I got from embracing exercises is having the power to control my emotional frame. Obese individuals are always grumpy, angry and easily tempered. Exercises are the ultimate therapy to these negative traits.
What do you think is the biggest impediment hindering people from living healthy lives in Kenya?
The biggest impediment is misinformation which emanates from our social norms and beliefs. Our society is an obesogenic society, meaning, our lifestyle promotes the rising prevalence of obesity. Statistics show that in Kenya, the prevalence of obesity to be 60.3% among urban residents and 19.5% among rural residents. However, I suspect that the figure could be higher in rural areas because of misinformation and lack of knowledge about the association between poor lifestyles and obesity. The higher risk of obesity in Kenya is associated with increased consumption of a high-calorie diet.
Do you do private consulting for people interested in shedding weight and do you do this as a business?
Yes. I do private consulting for people struggling with Diabetes Mellitus Type 2, obesity and weight. I also do private consulting for men suffering from sexual health disorders and inadequacies like addiction to masturbation and pornography, erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation, alcoholism and hemorrhoids. I engage my clients through Twitter, Telegram channels and my website which is www.amerix.co.ke.
You get a lot of stick, especially from ladies who feel you are too harsh with your masculinity tweets; your take on that?
I have no problem with women turning their heat on me because women are naturally reactionary and hence emotional. They derive their sense of validation by expending their emotions to matters that challenge their deep-rooted beliefs. Their protracted agitation against #MasculinitySaturday tweets could be justified because the conversation seeks to take away their manipulative mannerism towards men.
Describe your typical day
My day begins at 5am, I read and write till 5:30am then go to the gym. I go to the gym thrice a week, so the days I am not scheduled in the gym, I read and write more. Thereafter I go to work from 8am to 4pm from Monday to Friday where I attend to patients in the Maternity and Gynecology wards and the Obstetrics and Gynecology clinic. I then engage in creative activities and attend to clients in my private office between 5pm and 7pm, read a book between 7pm and 8pm, then retire to bed by 9pm.