by Carlito C. Dar / PIA
With around six million Filipinos currently afflicted with diabetes, the World Health Organization has projected that cases will continue to rise and will reach 7.8 million by 2030.
This will put the Philippines in the top 10 countries with the highest prevalence of diabetes worldwide, Dr. Francis Pizarro of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center Diabetes Clinic said in a recent news forum.
Pizarro said BGHMC has noted an increase in diabetic cases. From the less than 50 new cases a year when they started screening in 1988, figures increased to about 150 to 200 a year by 2000. The increasing trend continued over the years, and present data indicates about 250 to 300 new cases a year.
He said while diabetes is mostly prevalent among adults, there is a trend now where diabetes patients are getting younger and even becoming prevalent among teenagers, mostly due to obesity and sedentary lifestyle.
“Let us also be wary and work together for the prevention of diabetes, which, although a non-communicable disease, is also a dreadful one,” he said.
Diabetes, he explained, is a hereditary disease. He advised relatives of a diagnosed diabetic to have their blood sugar screened as a preventive measure.
Pizarro also reminded the public to have a healthy lifestyle, eat a balanced diet as well and maintain a healthy weight.
“Drink plenty of water and eat more fruits. Avoid food with high fat, high sugar, and high salt content. Reduce intake of desserts and eating in fastfood restairants. Stop smoking and avoid intoxicating drinks. Enjoy your life by balancing work, leisure, and family activities,” Pizarro said.