By Joenal Sesay
Madam Manal Ghazzawi, the Consultant Clinical Pharmacist and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of City Globe, has said that based on her research Diabetes is on the increase in Sierra Leone.
She made this disclosure over the weekend during walk from Congo Cross to Gulf Club organized by City Globe to raised awareness and educates the public about diabetes as the world is commemorating World Diabetes Day on the 14th November, 2019.
Madam Manal Ghazzawi went on to say based on her research Africa is the next destination for high rate of diabetes simply due to the adoption of westernized culture. “Diabetes will not only be disease of the developed work but also disease of the developing world.”
She went on to say that increases in urbanization, westernization are some of the factors leading to the increase in diabetes in Africa as they have access to transportation, exposed to unhealthy diet, some seated in the offices for longer period tend to be less active and lack of knowledge about nutrition and what they should be eat among others.
City Globe Madam Manal Ghazzawi said has been raising awareness of diabetes since 2013 and every year they are commemorating World Diabetes Day.
She said one can also get diabetes if that person have family history but if he or she do regular exercise and eat healthy, it will take longer period for the disease to show up. “There are some without family history but because of obesity which is one of the main causes of diabetes will end up to cause isocline resistance because of the fat.”
She defined obesity as a disorder involving excessive body fat that increase the risk of health problems and it is often results from taking in more calories than are burned by exercise and normal daily activities.
Diabetes, a non-communicable disease, chronic condition characterized by increase blood sugar level. It is a condition that impairs the body’s ability to process blood glucose, otherwise known as blood sugar.
“There are several types of diabetes. Three major diabetes types can develop: Type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes.
Type I diabetes: Also known as juvenile diabetes, this type occurs when the body fails to produce insulin. People with type I diabetes are insulin-dependent, which means they must take artificial insulin daily to stay alive.
Type 2 diabetes: Type 2 diabetes affects the way the body uses insulin. While the body still makes insulin, unlike in type I, the cells in the body do not respond to it as effectively as they once did. This is the most common type of diabetes, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, and it has strong links with obesity.
Gestational diabetes: This type occurs in women during pregnancy when the body can become less sensitive to insulin. Gestational diabetes does not occur in all women and usually resolves after giving birth. Less common types of diabetes include monogenic diabetes and cystic fibrosis-related diabetes.”
Diabetes is a serious, chronic condition. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), the condition is the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. While diabetes itself is manageable, its complications can severely impact on daily living, and some can be fatal if not treated immediately.
She added that the complications of diabetes include:
Dental and gum diseases, eye problems and sight loss, foot problems, including numbness, leading to ulcers and untreated injuries and cuts, heart disease, nerve damage, such as diabetic neuropathy, stroke, kidney disease.
“In the case of kidney disease, this complication can lead to kidney failure, water retention when the body does not dispose of water correctly, and a person experiencing difficulties with bladder control.
Regularly monitoring blood glucose levels and moderating glucose intake can help people prevent the more damaging complications of type 2 diabetes. For those with types 1 diabetes, taking insulin is the only way to moderate and control the effects of the condition.”
Symptoms of any type of diabetes are related to high blood and urine glucose levels and include: frequent infections, nausea, vomiting, and blurred vision. hunger, dehydration, weight loss or gain, fatigue, dry mouth, slow-healing wounds, cuts, or sores, itching skin, and increased susceptibility to infections.
Madam Mahal Ghazzawi pointed out that some of the signs and symptom are overlooked. She said it is important for the public to know about diabetes as it is a global health situation. She advised for regular weekly exercise, reduction in oily and starchy food.
Founder of Body Teak Fitness Club, Francis Chi Andu said they joined the walk to raised awareness about the disease as many lack the awareness about the existing of disease and how its kills. For those that were not present for the walk he encouraged them to know that there are things that regulate the existence of diabetes such as regular exercise. He categorized the exercise in three forms which are:
Flexibility that covered range of motion and muscles, Strength Exercise that strengthen bones and prevent one from bone problem and fractures and Cardio that improve one’s heart. These, he said, if done regularly will help prevent the sickness.
Programme Manager National Eye Care Program, Dr Jalikatu Mustapha said diabetes affect the whole body and more especially the eyes, it can affect your vision and lead to blindness. She said there are several problems that it can cause into the eyes which one can’t be aware of until they check their eyes.
The walk climaxed with free screening and educative messages about Diabetes.