• Dr Tarundeep Kaur

14.4 Crore Indians will be diabetic by 2025, targeting young men less than 40 years of age.

Updated: Oct 4, 2019

The financial growth in India has resulted in higher income – and a considerable increase in diabetes. It is often classified as a ‘lifestyle disease’ and is found in higher numbers as populations accumulate wealth and indulge in excessive consumption of high-calorie foods and a sedentary lifestyle. Poor diets are now found across all income brackets because of growth in the availability of fast, relatively cheap food in recent years.

Approximately 2% of women aged 15-19 years and 2.6% aged 20-25 years had high blood glucose levels. In men, this increased to 2.9% and 3.7%, respectively, according to data from the NFHS 2015-16. Today, one in every four people under 25 has adult-onset diabetes, a condition usually seen in 40-50-year-olds, according to the Indian Council of Medical Research’s youth diabetes registry. Given the challenges in diabetes detection and management in India, it is imperative to increase awareness amongst the Indian population regarding this rapidly growing disease.

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition that begins in childhood and caused by the body attacking its own pancreas with antibodies. In people with type1 diabetes, the damaged pancreas doesn't make insulin which may be caused by a genetic predisposition or as a result of defective beta cells in the pancreas that normally produce insulin. Many medical risks associated with type 1 diabetes stem from damage to the tiny blood vessels in your eyes, nerves, kidneys. More serious is the increased risk of heart disease and stroke. Treatment involves taking injectable insulin to be taken after consultation with your physician only.

Type 2 used to be called adult-onset diabetes, but with the epidemic of obese and overweight kids, more teenagers are now developing type 2 diabetes. It is a form of diabetes that is characterized by high blood sugar, insulin resistance and a relative lack of insulin. Type 2 diabetes also increases your risk of heart disease and stroke. In Type 2 diabetes, the pancreas produces less insulin or the body's cells are resistant to it.

There is no cure for diabetes but it can be controlled with weight management, nutrition, and exercise. Some preventive measures are:

1. Reduce sugar and refined carbs from your diet

2. Exercise regularly.

3. Drink water as your main beverage

4. Lose weight if overweight or obese

5. Quit smoking.

6. Eat a very low-carb diet

7. Keep a check on portion sizes

8. Avoid a sedentary lifestyle

9. Consume a high fiber diet and reduce the intake of processed food.

Authored by:

Dr. Tarundeep Kaur

3 October 2019

My experience in the medical field extends from practicing as a general physician for almost 10 years more recently working in the capacity of a clinical lead in one of the top e- pharmacy organizations in India. My entire journey has made me believe that the benefits merging medicine with the latest technology can provide convenient, accessible and cost-effective patient care.

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