The survey carried out simultaneously in Mumbai, New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Lucknow, Bengaluru, Trivandrum and Hyderabad during June-August revealed how Hyderabadis suffering from Type 2 diabetes seldom exercise.
Titled ‘Food, Spikes and Diabetes survey’ and released ahead of the World Diabetes Day on November 14 by pharma major Abbott and a research agency, found that only 23% diabetics surveyed in Hyderabad exercise – the laziest among all the diabetic respondents in the eight city survey. Their Chennai counterparts gave them close company as they were next in line with 25% of them saying they exercised.
“For diabetics, exercise is the first lifestyle modification that is recommended. Even a brisk walk for 45 minutes is found to increase the sensitivity of glucose transporter GLUT4, which ultimately helps in controlling the sugar levels,” said Dr Sanjoy Paul, senior consultant diabetologist, Apollo Sugar Clinic, Hyderabad.
This is not all as the worst and probably the most shocking part of the findings was that Hyderabadi diabetics reported the highest calorie consumption standing at 3,445Kcal per day, again the highest among the diabetic respondents in the eight city survey. Their high eating habits was followed closely by their Kolkata counterparts with 3,256Kcal per day.
It is not just the calorie-laden meals, what’s worse was the diabetics in the city were found maintaining a wide gap between waking up and eating their breakfast at an average time-gap of 3.05 hours (longest duration followed closely by their Kolkata counterparts with 2.45 hours). They also ate only three meals, contrary to what experts would suggest for such patients.
“For diabetics, our advice always has been not just to keep count of their calorie intake but break-down their three meals into five – 8-9am for breakfast, mid-morning snack at 11am, lunch, midevening snack at around 4pm followed by dinner at around 8pm. This is because when the gap between two meals increases, it increases the hunger leading to more eating and calorie intake,” said Dr G Arun, senior endocrinologist, Yashoda Hospitals, Somajiguda.
Interestingly, the top three favorite foods mentioned in the survey were idli, vada, upma for breakfast and chapati, rice, vegetable curry, dal and pulses in lunch respectively.
But, how does a diabetic measure calorie intake and how much food is too much, is a difficult question that experts said differs from person to person and needs to be chalked out only by a nutritionist.
“For a diabetic, 25-30kcal per kg of body weight is the recommended intake. Those still confused on how to measure calorie intake, they can refer to food atlas, which feature hundreds of foods eaten across regions in various portion sizes along with main nutritional values,” said Dr Sujatha Stephen, chief nutritionist at Maxcure Hospitals, Madhapur.
Highlighting the importance of the survey, Bhasker Iyer, vice president, Abbott, said, “Insights from this study will allow people to control their diabetes, helping them live a full life”.