Srinagar, Nov 14: Exhibiting an alarming trend , a medical study has revealed that Jammu and Kashmir has higher prevalence of non-communicable diseases including diabetes mellitus (DM) than the national average.
This was revealed by doctors on Tuesday attributing the trend to preliminary results of an ICMR-INDIAB study undertaken in the Union Territory.
Dr Ashraf Ganai, Professor of Endocrinology and Head of Clinical Research at SKIMS Srinagar said Diabetes Mellitus is a serious long-term condition and one of the important chronic non-communicable diseases galloping as a growing health challenge of the 21st century.
Speaking about the causes he said, “The disorder results from a defect in insulin secretion, insulin action, or both. Insulin deficiency or its ineffectiveness in turn leads to disturbances of carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism with chronic hyperglycemia (high glucose) as a predominant feature.”
Dr Ashraf said the ICMR-INDIAB study in J&K is ongoing and its results will be available in a few months. “The preliminary results suggest that the prevalence of non-communicable diseases including diabetes mellitus is higher than the national average,” he said.
While sharing his experiences the senior endocrinologist said that at SKIMS and AIIMS New Delhi many of the surveys show alarming rise of DM/pre-DM.
“Recently, our group has published a study carried out in PCOS women were around 50 per cent of subjects have one or the other form of glucose intolerance,” he said.
Although DM is categorized into type 1 diabetes (the body produces very little or no insulin), type 2 diabetes mellitus (inability of the body's cells to respond fully to insulin), fibro calculous diabetes (pancreatic stones) and gestational diabetes mellitus (high blood glucose levels during pregnancy), type 2 diabetes is the commonest one.
Dr Ashraf said many risk factors for diabetes including lack of exercise, overweight/obesity, and unhealthy eating history can be modified but genetics, and age cannot be changed.
“Once DM is diagnosed it needs a planned and concerted effort of caregivers on a long-term basis with dieticians, nurse practioners, diabetes educators and diabetologist on the forefront. Realizing the gravity of the burden of diabetes and the mismatch of diabetologist: patient ratio we need to rope in paramedics in the diabetes care,” he said.
To mark World Diabetes Day, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) this year has announced that the theme of World Diabetes Day 2023 is Access to Diabetes Care.
He quoted the Indian Council of Medical Research–India Diabetes (ICMR-INDIAB) study conducted to know the prevalence of NCDs diabetes mellitus, hypertension, obesity and dyslipidemia among the Indian population.
This study is a cross-sectional population-based survey, of individuals aged 20 years and older from urban and rural areas of 31 states, and Union Territories.
More than one lakh individuals from urban and rural areas were screened, between Oct 18, 2008 and Dec 17, 2020. The INDIAB study found that 11.4% of Indians had DM while another 15.3% had prediabetes (a stage before diabetes).
While talking about the global burden of diabetes, Dr Ashraf said DM has a major impact on the lives and well-being of individuals, families, and societies world over.
He said the burden of DM is rising in any age group, especially among youth with significant impact among racial and ethnic minorities.
“Besides the proportion of older people in our nation is increasing, and older people are more likely to have a chronic disease like DM,” he said.
Dr Ashraf said the frequency of diabetes epidemic continues to escalate which is expected to affect 578 million adults with diabetes by 2030, and 700 million by 2045.
India currently represents 17 per cent of the world’s diabetes burden, is home to 100 million diabetics, second highest in the world.
As per doctors the number of diabetologists is limited in the country and most of the individuals with diabetes are not able to meet the specialist.
“There is a concept of diabetes educator, mostly in the western countries, although the diabetes educator program has started in some parts of our country,” he said.
Notably, in this regard SKIMS Srinagar in collaboration with University of Kashmir has started a course of Diabetes Educator and the first batch is presently going on.
Dr Shariq Rashid Masoodi, an endocrinologist at SKIMS Soura said that “diabesity” epidemic (obesity and T2D) is likely to be the biggest epidemic in human history.
“If we look at the quantity of food in Kashmir including our wazwaan (Kashmiri cuisine) its quantity is huge and it is high in calories,” he said.
The endocrinologist said in Kashmir urbanization is one of the major reasons behind the rise in incidence of diabetes and people have become less active and take high-caloric food. He said the world is witnessing rise in the incidence of diabetes.
He said people should make physical activity a routine. “People have become less active and it is the reason behind many diseases,” he said.
As per the World Health Organization, NCDs share four major risk factors: tobacco use, physical inactivity, the harmful use of alcohol and unhealthy diets. The socioeconomic costs associated with NCDs make the prevention and control of these diseases is a major development imperative for the 21st century.