• What is diabetes?

    What is diabetes?

    Diabetes is a condition in which the level of sugar (glucose) in the blood is high.The body produces insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas, which breaks down the sugar consumed in food. A reduction in the production and/or utilization of insulin causes diabetes. If left untreated or uncontrolled, diabetes can lead to serious problems, such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, among others. Some of these may be life threatening.

  • What is type 1 diabetes?

    What is type 1 diabetes?

    In this type 1 diabetes, the body completely stops producing insulin due to destruction of the insulin-producing pancreatic cells by the body’s immune system. It was previously referred to as juvenile diabetes because it is usually diagnosed in young adults or children, or insulin-dependent diabetes, as insulin therapy is essential for survival and maintenance of good health.

  • What is type 2 diabetes?

    What is type 2 diabetes?

    This is the more common form of diabetes, accounting for about 90% of cases.In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas either produces inadequate amounts of insulin,or the body is unable to use the available insulin properly. Type 2 diabetes usually occurs in adults, and is more common in people who are overweight or obese. Type 2 diabetes was previously known as maturity-onset or non-insulindependentdiabetes. It is treated mostly with diet, exercise and oral medication.Insulin is given only if the blood sugar levels cannot be controlled by oral medication. More than 80% of type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed by reducing the risk factors that may lead to its development and adopting healthier lifestyles.

  • What tests can be done to check for diabetes? What are the normal values?

    What tests can be done to check for diabetes? What are the normal values?

    Several tests can be done to estimate the blood sugar level. All these tests estimate the amount of sugar in a certain quantity of blood.

    • RPG (random plasma glucose): this is a blood test done at any time of the day to check the blood sugar level at that point in time. If the RPG value is ≥200 mg/ dL (11.1 mmol/L) of blood, it indicates that the person has diabetes. Further tests may be required for confirmation.
    • FPG (fasting plasma glucose): this tests the amount of sugar in the blood stream after one has not eaten for 8–10 hours (overnight fasting). This is usually done first thing in the morning before breakfast. An FPG value ≥126 mg/dL (≥7.0 mmol/L) indicates that the person has diabetes.
    • Glycated haemoglobin (HbA1C): this test measures how well the blood sugar has been controlled over the past 3 months. If the HbA1C is ≥6.5% (47.0 mmol/mol), it indicates the presence of diabetes.
    • OGTT (oral glucose tolerance test): this is another type of test for diabetes. The blood sugar level is checked in the fasting state and then 2 hours after drinking a certain amount of glucose. It shows how the body processes glucose. If the 2-hour value is ≥200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L), it indicates the presence of diabetes.
    • HAEMOGRAM COMPLETE (15 Parameters)
    • URINE COMPLETE (15 Parameters)
    • THYROID PROFILE (3 Parameters)
    • ECG

    Check Your Blood Sugar Level Regularly

  • What is prediabetes?

    What is prediabetes?

    Prediabetes is a condition in which the blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. Millions of people worldwide do not know that they have prediabetes. That is why it is important to get screened for prediabetes. If the HbA1C is between 5.7% and 6.4%, or the FPG is more than 110 mg/dL but less than 126 mg/dL, or the OGTT (2-hour glucose test) is between 140 and 199 mg/dL, the condition is termed as prediabetes.

    Prediabetic persons may develop type 2 diabetes in later life. There is a rule of “thirds” – about one third of prediabetic people will develop diabetes in the next five years, one third will remain prediabetic, while one third will revert to normal. Those who have prediabetes are at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease.Following proper diet and exercise programmes to control weight can help prevent progression from prediabetes to diabetes and avoid cardiovascular problems. Screening for diabetes and prediabetes should not be delayed; it is better done early rather than late.

  • What is insulin resistance?

    What is insulin resistance?

    Insulin resistance is a condition in which the body’s ability to respond to the effects of insulin is decreased. Insulin has many actions within the body, such as the breakdown of carbohydrates (sugars and starches), fats and proteins into glucose. As cells must have glucose to survive, the body compensates for the inadequate response to insulin by producing additional amounts of insulin. This results in high level of insulin in the blood, which is one of the signs of
    insulin resistance.

  • What is gestational diabetes?

    What is gestational diabetes?

    Gestational diabetes is a temporary type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy (gestation). A woman who had gestational diabetes in one pregnancy has a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes in future pregnancies.Although gestational diabetes reverts to normal after pregnancy, it increases the risk of type 2 diabetes in future. Therefore, regular and timely screening for type 2 diabetes is essential for women who have had gestational diabetes.

    Choose Water Over Sugary Drinks

  • Who is at high risk for developing gestational diabetes?

    Who is at high risk for developing gestational diabetes?

    Any woman can develop gestational diabetes, but some women are at higher risk. There are a number of factors that increase a woman’s chances of developing gestational diabetes. These factors include: being older than 25 years of age, being overweight prior to pregnancy, having a family history of diabetes, previous history of raised blood glucose level, history of repeated abortions or stillbirth, or a previous history of delivering a big baby and having polycystic ovarian syndrome. A sedentary lifestyle, hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases also increase the risk of developing gestational diabetes. Hence, screening of all pregnant women for diabetes is recommended as a standard protocol.

  • Who is at risk of developing type 2 diabetes?

    Who is at risk of developing type 2 diabetes?

    • Family History: if one has a parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes, the risk of getting diabetes increases.
    • Age: the risk of type 2 diabetes increases with age, especially after the age of 40 years. This may be associated with decreased exercise, loss of muscle mass and weight gain as age increases. Despite the known association of type 2 diabetes with age, in recent years, the incidence of type 2 diabetes has been
      increasing dramatically among children, adolescents and young adults.
    • Race: people from certain racial backgrounds are found to have a higher risk of developing diabetes, although the reason is not known. Overweight/obesity: being overweight is a primary risk factor for type 2 diabetes. The more fatty tissue one has, the more resistant the cells become to insulin. However, one does not have to be overweight to develop type 2 diabetes..
    • Inadequate Physical Activity: the less active one is, the more likely one is to develop type 2 diabetes. Physical activity helps one control weight, use glucose as energy and increase the sensitivity of the cells to insulin.
    • Unhealthy Diet: a diet rich in calories, saturated fats and sugar, and low in fibre can lead to an increase in body weight and thereby increase the risk for developing diabetes.Having high blood pressure or a high lipid level also puts a person at risk of developing diabetes.
    • Gestational diabetes:women who developed diabetes during pregnancy have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. If the baby born to such a woman weighed more than 9 pounds (>4 kg), one is also at risk of developing type 2 diabetes in future.

    Exercise Regularly:30 minutes, 5 times a week

  • Why does being overweight or obese put one at risk for developing diabetes?

    Why does being overweight or obese put one at risk for developing diabetes?

    Body weight affects health in many ways. Being overweight can keep the body from producing and utilizing insulin properly. It can also cause high blood pressure. Overweight people are twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as people with normal weight. Losing weight and increasing physical activity reduces the risk of developing this type of diabetes.

  • What are the common signs and symptoms of type 2 diabetes?

    What are the common signs and symptoms of type 2 diabetes?

    One of the most important things to remember is that diabetes does not always produce symptoms until the disorder is fairly advanced. If one has a few of the following symptoms, one may suspect diabetes:

    • Diabetes can affect the eyes. High blood sugar levels can cause the lens to swell,
      and the vision may become blurred or foggy.
    • An affected person may become easily tired for no apparent reason.
    • One may pass urine more frequently than before.
    • Hunger may increase and the person may eat more than usual.
    • There may be weight loss despite a good appetite.
    • A person may become overly thirsty and tend to drink excessive amounts of water. This is because the body tries to compensate for the water lost through the urine.
    • A high blood sugar level makes it hard for the body to fight infections. Wounds do not heal easily, there may be frequent infections of the skin, bladder or gums,and itching in the genital area.
    • There may be numbness or tingling in the hands and feet.

    The symptoms of type 1 diabetes are more sudden and severe. Children with diabetes complain of tiredness, weakness and may sometimes exhibit irritable behaviour.

  • Why is it important to go for regular check-ups?

    Why is it important to go for regular check-ups?

    The symptoms of type 2 diabetes may be so mild that it may not be noticed for years, and therefore remains untreated. This may lead to complications. As one cannot always rely on symptoms, the only way to know whether one has diabetes is to be screened (tested) for it.

    Screening for diabetes is done in a doctor’s office, clinic or laboratory under the supervision of a health-care provider. The health-care provider may do one or several blood tests to look for diabetes. High-risk individuals should be screened for diabetes at regular intervals, beginning at the age of 35 years.

  • What are the types of treatment for diabetes?

    What are the types of treatment for diabetes?

    The aim of treatment is to maintain the blood sugar level as close to normal as possible. The type of food and level of physical activity play an important role in controlling blood sugar, as do medicines. Various medicines can be used to treat diabetes. Medicines for diabetes should be prescribed only by a health-care provider. However, it is important for the person with diabetes to understand how the medicines work.

    Apart from taking medicines by mouth, injectable medicines may also be used.Insulin is currently not available in pill form, and hence it must be injected.There are also non-insulin medicines that are injectable. There are many delivery devices for injectable insulin, such as needle, syringe and insulin pumps. Insulin is mandatory for people with type 1 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is usually treated with oral medicines but insulin injections may be prescribed if oral medications do not adequately control the blood sugar level.

    Treatment depends on the type of diabetes, complications, presence of other risk factors, coexisting active medical problem, age and general health at the time of diagnosis. The health-care provider will decide which medicine will work best for the individual patient. The advantages and disadvantages of each of these medicines can be explained by the health-care provider. For treatment to be successful, the patient must carefully manage the diet, be physically active, take oral medication and/or insulin, and be well informed about the disease.

  • How do patients with diabetes know that their disease is well controlled?

    How do patients with diabetes know that their disease is well controlled?

    A glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) test accurately assesses how well the blood glucose has been controlled over a period of 2–3 months. For non-diabetic individuals, the normal HbA1c level is usually below 5.5%. In people with diabetes, an HbA1c level below 7.0% indicates good control.

  • What are the complications and consequences of diabetes?

    What are the complications and consequences of diabetes?

    The complications of diabetes develop gradually. When too much sugar stays in the blood stream for a long time, it can affect the blood vessels, nerves, eyes, kidneys and cardiovascular system. Complications include heart attack and stroke, severe foot infections (leading to gangrene, which may result in amputation), end-stage kidney failure and sexual dysfunction. After 10–15 years of onset, the prevalence of all diabetes-related complications increase markedly.

  • Can the complications of diabetes be prevented?

    Can the complications of diabetes be prevented?

    The good news is that the complications of diabetes can be prevented by doing the
    following important things:

    • Take medicines regularly as prescribed by the health-care provider
    • Keep a track of the blood sugar level by going for regular tests and check-ups.
    • Eat healthy – more vegetables and fruit, less fatty, sugary and salty food.
    • Stay physically active.
    • Stay alert for skin infections and skin disorders.
    • Go for regular eye check-ups.
    • Watch for any tingling, burning, loss of sensation, and wounds on the bottom of the feet.

    Talk to the health-care provider and discuss how to avoid complications and how to deal with these if one already has some complication.

  • Why do individuals with diabetes need to take special care of their feet?

    Why do individuals with diabetes need to take special care of their feet?

    Foot problems are an important cause of complications in individuals with diabetes. Over the years, the blood circulation in the legs and feet may become poor and the nerves become less sensitive. Individuals with diabetes can unknowingly injure their feet due to reduced sensation. Patients at risk for developing problems of the feet are often more than 40 years or age, use some form of tobacco, have decreased sensation in and blood flow to the legs and feet, anatomical deformities or a history of foot ulcers or previous amputation. To prevent foot complications,individuals with diabetes should check regularly for various foot conditions, such as bleeding corns and calluses, blisters, ingrowing toenails, dry and cracked skin,redness, swelling, warmth, pain over the legs, slow healing of wounds, and loss of sensation. With proper foot care, it is estimated that as many as half of the foot and leg amputations could be prevented. In addition, proper selection of footwear is very important.

    Check regularly for foot conditions to avoid foot complications

  • Does the diet for those with diabetes differ from that of non-diabetic persons?

    Does the diet for those with diabetes differ from that of non-diabetic persons?

    The diet for diabetic individuals is the same as for persons without diabetes.Diabetic people do not need a special diet. Make sure that the diet is healthy and maintain healthy eating habits to control the blood sugar level. A healthy diet comprises complex carbohydrates (whole grain cereal) low in fat and has plenty of green leafy vegetables and fruits. With proper planning, one can still enjoy a wide variety of favourite food.

  • Why it is important for people with diabetes to be physically active?

    Why it is important for people with diabetes to be physically active?

    Physical activity delays or prevents the onset of type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that physically active individuals have a 30–50% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to sedentary individuals. Physical activity helps to control the blood glucose level, weight and blood pressure, reduce the cholesterol level and prevent cardiovascular disease.

  • Can diabetes lead to serious emergencies?

    Can diabetes lead to serious emergencies?

    Yes, it can lead to serious and life-threatening medical emergencies. These can occur if the blood sugar is too high or too low. Diabetic emergencies are best treated in a hospital as quickly as possible.

  • What is hypoglycaemia and how can it be prevented and managed?

    What is hypoglycaemia and how can it be prevented and managed?

    Hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) is the most common complication seen in individuals with diabetes. The blood sugar level may suddenly become too low for various reasons, including vigorous physical activity, taking the wrong dose of insulin/antidiabetic medicine or not eating enough or eating too late. It is usually mild and can be treated quickly by eating or drinking something with a high sugar content.

    The symptoms of low blood sugar are usually non-specific and patients may feel some discomfort, sweating, palpitations, weakness and giddiness. If possible, it is advisable to check the blood sugar at this time. If not, the patient should be given some sugar drink or fruit juice. Sugar or glucose is also useful in correcting low
    blood sugar. If the patient is unconscious, it is best to give intravenous glucose under medical supervision. Frequent falls in blood sugar are best avoided in all diabetic patients, especially in children and the elderly, by adjusting the dose of the antidiabetic medications. If left untreated, it can get worse and lead to
    confusion or even coma

    Eat healthy: More vegetables and fruits, less sugary, salty and fatty foods

  • How can diabetes be prevented and controlled?

    How can diabetes be prevented and controlled?

    The cause of type 1 diabetes is not known and it cannot be prevented with the current state of knowledge. Simple lifestyle changes can help in the preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes.

    What can individuals do?

    • Achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.
    • Be physically active – at least 30 minutes of regular, moderate-intensity activity on most days. More activity is required for weight control.
    • Eat a healthy diet of between three and five servings of fruit and vegetables a day, and reduce the intake of sugar, salt and saturated fats.
    • Avoid tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol.
    • Manage stress.
    • Test the blood glucose and glycated haemoglobin levels regularly.

    What can communities and civil societies do?

    • Create and maintain safe neighbourhoods for physical activity, and improve access to parks and playgrounds.
    • Identify and support high-profile champions of change and community leaders,who will speak strongly for the needs and rights of people with diabetes.
    • Advocate for physical activity and healthy diets in educational institutions and workplaces.

    What can the private sector do?

    • Ensure that healthy and nutritious choices are available and affordable for all consumers.
    • Voluntarily reduce the sugar, salt and fat content of processed food.
    • Avoid marketing unhealthy food and beverages, particularly to children.
    • Ensure the availability of healthy food choices and support the practice of regular physical activity in the workplace by providing space for outdoor and indoor games and constructing gymnasiums..
    • Encourage employers to adopt policies that support physical activity, such as group activity programmes

    What can governments do?

    • Recognize that diabetes is an important public health and development problem.
    • Create public awareness about diet and physical activity through the mass media and other means.
    • Create an enabling environment to promote physical activity, such as walking and playing spaces, adequate public transport, and sports, fitness and recreational facilities.
    • Improve the availability of and accessibility to healthy and nutritious food through appropriate policies, including fiscal and legislative measures to promote intake of vegetables, fruits and whole grains, and reduce the consumption of unhealthy food and beverages.
    • Take necessary action to reduce unhealthy behaviours such as smoking and harmful use of alcohol.
    • Regulate the marketing of unhealthy food and non-alcoholic beverages to children.
    • Promote interventions to increase physical activity and promote healthy diets at schools, workplaces and communities.
    • Increase access to early detection and treatment of diabetes by increasing access to testing and affordable antidiabetic medicines, including insulin.

    Stay active: walk, run,bike, dance, swim

  • What are your choices apart from rice and wheat?

    What are your choices apart from rice and wheat?

    Names of Millets in Different Languages

    English Hindi Tamil Telungu Kannada Bengali Marathi Gujarathi Oriya
    Barnyard Millet Sanwa Kuthiraivali Udhalu Oodhalu Shyama Khira
    Proso Millet Chena Pani varagu Variga Baragu Cheena Vari Cheno Bachari Bagmu
    kondo Millet kondon Varagu Arikelu Haarka Kodo Kodra Kodra Kodua
    Little Millet Kutki Samai Samalu Same Sama Sava Gajro Suan
    Sorghum Jowari Cholam Jonna Jola Jowar Jowari Jowari Juara
    Pearl Millet Bajra Kambu Sajja Sajje Bajra Bajri Bajri Bajra
    Finger Millet Ragi Keppai Ragi Ragi Marwa Nagli Nagli Mandia
    Foxtail Millet kakum Thenai Korra Navane Kaon Kang Kang Kanghu

    Food Processing is Killing You?

    Rice Polishing Kills Nutrients

    • 50% Manganese
    • 50% Phosphorus
    • 67% VitaminB3
    • 80% Vitamin B1
    • 90% Vitamin B6
    • 100% Fiber
    • 100% FBA

    Why Millets?

    Types Of Millets

    • Alkalising
    • Easily Digestible
    • Healthy Colon
    • Lowers Cholesterol
    • Lots of Fibre
    • High in Protein
    • Lower Gi
    • Contains Major & Micro Nutrients
    • Reduces Migraine
    • Reduces Heart Attack

    While most of us seek micronutrients in pharmaceutical pills, millets offer it in abundant quantities.

    Comparative Nutritive Value Millets Vs White Rice