Chairman, Association of Public Health Physicians of Nigeria, APHPN, Kaduna Chapter, Dr. Mohammed S. Ibrahim has yesterday raised alarm that diabetes is increasingly becoming one of the leading causes of death.
Dr. Ibrahim, who made this known in a press statement issued to newsmen in Kaduna yesterday to mark this year’s World Health day, said Diabetes is a serious health condition that affected more than one million Nigerians in 2015.
The medical expert further said more and more Nigerians are increasingly coming down with diabetes and about one third are not even aware that they have the disease, its complications and the long term risks that it poses to their health.
According to him, “it is increasingly becoming one of the leading causes of death with about one third not even aware that they have the disease, not aware of its complications and the long term risks that it poses to their health.
“The major risk factors of diabetes are consumption of unhealthy diet, tobacco use, physical inactivity and excessive alcohol consumption. Risk factors for diabetes also include high blood pressure and family history. Diabetes is usually preceded by pre-diabetes which if untreated, will lead to diabetes within five years in about 15 to 30 percent of cases.
“However, pre-diabetes can be reversed through weight loss or maintaining normal body weight, diet changes such as eating healthy food, engaging in increased regular physical exercise, and avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol intake. Early detection is also important because if people are aware that they have diabetes, they are more likely to make the necessary lifestyle changes.
“Important lifestyle changes to prevent diabetes include; avoiding unhealthy diet such as fast foods, engaging in regular physical activity in form of exercise, avoiding excessive alcohol consumption, and avoiding the use of tobacco such as smoking, snuffing, or even chewing. Regular visits to health facilities to have blood sugar tests conducted for both young and old and advice from health care providers are also encouraged in order to reduce the risk of developing diabetes and its mostly irreversible complications such as heart attack, stroke, blindness, and loss of limbs,” he said.
Dr. Ibrahim continued when he said, they however use the occasion of the 2016 World Health Day to call on all people, especially in Kaduna State, to adopt healthy lifestyle in order to avoid diabetes and its complications.
“Additionally, we shall participate in radio programmes in both English and Hausa Languages, in order to create awareness on diabetes and its complication. In an effort to raise awareness and help prevent further spread of this disease, APHPN Kaduna State Chapter thus, joins government and other stakeholders this year to ‘HALT THE RISE AND BEAT DIABETES’.
“The World Health Day is marked every year on April 7 in order to draw the attention of the world to particular health issues of high priority. The theme of the 2016 World Health Day is “Halt the rise: beat diabetes”. This will contribute to achieving the global Sustainable Development Goal, SDG, 3 target of ‘reducing premature deaths from non-communicable diseases by one-third by the year 2030’,” he stated.

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