Doctors suggest healthy food habits, exercises to control condition
Doctors in Kashmir Friday said the prevalence of diabetes in the Valley was rising and suggested parents to prevent children from unhealthy habits of food and activity.
According to them, in 2002, a study was conducted at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS), Soura in which people above 40 years of age were studied which revealed that 8 percent of people in Kashmir were suffering from the chronic condition.
“Since then, there has been no study. Keeping in mind the patient flow IN hospitals, today, it could be around 10 percent. And among the patients, more women are complaining about the condition,” said Dr Bashir Ahmad Laway, Head Department of Endocrinology, SKIMS Soura, on the sidelines of an interactive session ‘Diabetes and Life Style Diseases’ at Police Hospital Srinagar.
He said physical activity was important to get rid of the disease.
“Compulsory sports and physical activities in schools and colleges, gym facilities at workplaces, less use of gadgets, cordless phones and remote controls is vital to fight the condition,” Dr Laway said.
He said in Kashmir, prevalence of diabetes is less than different states.
“It is more prevalent among females as their stress level is higher and they are more obese than men,” Dr Laway said.
The endocrinologist said that the incidence of diabetes is rising India saying that people must focus on prevention and resort to an active lifestyle.
“A diabetic patient should get screened every year. We get around 300 patients a day at SKIMS and among them 70 percent suffer from diabetes,” he said.
Dr Laway said a good control of diabetes prevents complications.
"Till 30 years of age, patients have no symptoms and it becomes an economic burden on them in future," he said. “The treatment for the disease is expensive and it is more intense when one is dependent on children and family. People need to prevent children from unhealthy habits of food and activity."
The rising trend has caused concern among the doctors who suggest tougher government action to tackle the condition to save people at the earliest.
Talking to Rising Kashmir, Dr Shariq Rashid Masoodi, an endocrinologist at SKIMS, said 75 percent of the patients do not know they have diabetes.
“If we look at the amount of food in Kashmir, the size is big, and it is high caloric. The expression of genes changed due to the lifestyle changes, causing diabetes,” he said.
Dr Masoodi said the main reasons for the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus are same all over the world.
“The most important contributing factor of diabetes mellitus is the unhealthy lifestyle change,” he said.
Dr Masoodi said 100 percent control was in the hands of the patient and sought cooperation of the people.
“We need to promote a healthy lifestyle in terms of a routine exercise and healthy diet since genes cannot be changed. Initially, people used to engage in farming and other exercises but now people have less land and are living urbanized lives,” he said.
According to doctors at least 30 minutes daily exercises is important.
“We should also avoid readymade and junk foods which carry more fats. We should also have some relaxation exercises to avoid stress. Besides, we should also avoid chemicals like polythene, plastics, and adulterants which are known contributors to diabetes,” he said.
Diabetes prevalence has been rising more rapidly in middle and low-income countries, which is a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attacks, stroke and lower limb amputation.
An ophthalmologist at SMHS hospital said women who begin pregnancy with no retinopathy, the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy is about 10 percent.
“Women who begin with pregnancy with poorly-controlled diabetes and who are suddenly brought under strict control frequently have severe deterioration of their retinopathy and do not always recover after delivery,” he said.
According to World Health Organisation (WHO) the number of people with diabetes has risen from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014.
It said that the global prevalence of diabetes among adults over 18 years of age had risen from 4.7 percent in 1980 to 8.5 percent in 2014.
In 2016, an estimated 1.6 million deaths were directly caused by diabetes.
Another 2.2 million deaths were attributable to high blood glucose in 2012.