Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Diabetes: Are you facing these fads?


No, No! I can’t take this sweet, I am Diabetic.

This a very common hearing these days.

Diabetes aka Sugar is a household name these days. You must agree with me that there is not a single brown house on the road where a Diabetic patient is not residing. But things have gone far beyond.Yesterday, my maid who is in late forty’s, had become sweaty while washing utensils in the kitchen. Although, she was illiterate but quite knowledgeable about her symptoms, instantly asked for some sweet.
When settled, we enquired about her condition, her reply left us in great awe.

“Sister! I have sugar (Diabetes) and was having low Sugar Symptoms.”    

Diabetes and Obesity are two Epidemics of the 21st century. November 14 "the World Diabetes Day” marks the birthday of Sir Frederick Banting who discovered Insulin as a Treatment of Diabetes along with Charles Best. The theme of this year (2014-2016) is “Healthy living and
Diabetes”.77% of the Diabetics come from the low and middle income countries. As Diabetes is causing a major global burden, healthy lifestyle changes are the key to prevent 70% of the cases.
There is a long running debate about the Dietary concerns among the Diabetics.As they have to be little selective about their eating habits, there is a lot of confusion among the masses about what to eat & what to avoid?

Following are some of the common questions encountered by the physicians from the Diabetics.

Question #1: Are low carbs best for Diabetics?

Myth Solved.
This is a common misconception among the people. They worry a lot about the carbs content in their meal. Remember Diabetes doesn’t mean to curb the carb completely from your diet.
The best choice is to take the complex carbohydrate which are abundant in all natural products like Fresh vegetables, Fruits, Whole Grains, Nuts. These items contain the large amount of fibre which delays the absorption of a meal from the gut preventing the after meal sugar spikes in the blood.

Question #2: Is skipping the breakfast lowers my Blood Sugar level?

Myth Solved.
A study (2013) about the people who didn’t take their Breakfast, found out that they tend to have higher levels of insulin and blood sugar after the lunch for few hours.
A healthy Breakfast (comprising of protein and healthy fats) helps stabilizing the blood sugar level and keep you full throughout the day.

Question #3: Are Artificial Sweeteners Healthy?

Myth Solved:
It is reported in Health Day that long term use of Artificial Sweeteners(Saccharine) are more likely to have higher Fasting Blood Glucose levels. 1 or 2 tabs a day is enough to keep you safe at the harbour.

Question #4: Are Sugar Free Diet are good enough to eat?

Myth Solved:
Each of us whether or not diabetic, is taken up by the storm of Diet Foods. Be it a Diet Soft Drink any Diet Sweet. The bakers at the sweet shop add a lot of Fat (ghee) in order to balance the lack of Sugar.
In a journal of Nutrition study from 2011 states that higher level of fat in the blood affects body’s ability to clear sugar from the blood as well.

Question #5: Is Tea Beneficial for Diabetics?

Myth Solved:
Yes it is! Wow! Great news but not to forget that health benefits of Tea comes From Green and Black Tea, not the Milky Brew which we commonly sips away. It is found out that Tea improves the sensitivity in type 2 Diabetes. It also lowers the risks of certain other diseases like Blood pressure, Cancer and Heart Diseases.

Questions #6: Is Bitter Gourd / Grape fruit help in decreasing the Sugar?

Myth Solved:
This concept is pretty viral here in Pakistan. People consider that Diabetes is due to high sugar and gourd (karela) has a lot of bitterness in it.So they both have a fight in the tummy and eventually the bitter gourd wins .This is Ridiculous. Bitter Gourd and other vegetables are beneficial as they contain complex Carbohydrate preventing the glucose spikes in the blood after the meal.

These are some of the many misunderstood facts about Diabetes.
Awareness and education are the key factors getting the best control of Blood glucose levels. It should be the priority of all Diabetics to be crystal clear about their Diet Plan. A registered dietitian give you the best personalized advice.

Staying physically active and indulging into healthy eating habits promises a healthy long life.

Stay healthy and Stay Aware.