KARACHI, Pakistan: Around 12 per cent of Pakistan population is suffering from diabetes and an equal percentage has pre-diabetes.
Most of these patients also have hypertension and dyslipidemia. There is an epidemic of non-communicable diseases, like diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidemia, in our region.
The impact of diabetes and its related disorders on human health can be minimized by controlling obesity, glucose, hypertension and dyslipidemia. Obesity is considered the fifth leading cause for global death.
Professor Dr. Tasnim Ahsan, Dean, Faculty of Endocrinology at College of Physicians and Surgeons, Former Executive Director, and Head of Department of Medicine at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, made these notions at a public awareness seminar entitled `The Role of Diet in Diabetes and Hypertension’, held at Professor Salimuzzaman Siddiqui Auditorium, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences(ICCBS), University of Karachi here on Monday.
Dr. Panjwani Center for Molecular Medicine and Drug Research (PCMD), University of Karachi and Virtual Education Project Pakistan (VEPP), jointly organised the seminar.
Professor Ahsan said that we have yet to conquer the communicable diseases, which turned into an epidemic. This double burden of diseases, poses a severe stress on the healthcare resources, she maintained.
This is really a matter of concern that Pakistan is amongst the top 10 countries with the highest number of cases of Diabetes, she said, adding that the rise of diabetes in our country is multi-factorial.
She said, ‘Apart from the risk conferred by genetic susceptibility, lifestyle, eating habits and the exponential rise in obesity play a huge role in un-masking the disease susceptibility.
Lifestyle and dietary interventions have been shown to reduce the risk of developing Diabetes by 58 per cent. The impact of diabetes and its related disorders on human health can be minimized by controlling obesity, glucose, hypertension and dyslipidemia’.
She said that apart from regular intake of medicines, adherence to the prescribed dietary and lifestyle interventions are essential for meeting treatment goals. Achieving the therapeutic targets for sugar, blood pressure, lipids and body weight will ensure delaying or even preventing the onset of complications, she added.
According to a survey, conducted in the schools of Karachi, about 29 per cent children belonging to middle income families are suffering from obesity, which is higher than the children of other income groups, she said, adding that worldwide, at least 2.8 million people die each year as a result of being overweight or obese.
She said, `Globally, hypertension is the third leading cause of deaths, while worldwide hypertension is estimated to cause 7.7 million deaths. In Pakistan around 24.3 per cent adults aged 18 and over are hypertensive’.
She stressed the need to educate people regarding the management of the disease as using a healthy lifestyle, taking good food, doing regular exercise and through `Natural Life Style’ this disease can be managed.