‘Comfortable lifestyle’ putting more and more children at risk of diabetes: experts

Pakistan worst ranked for registered diabetes patients, with nearly a sixth of population affected and patients as young as 15

Modern day comforts, fast food, and disappearing outdoor activity in Pakistan is contributing to the increasing risk of diabetes amongst children as young as 15 years-of-age.

“While there is no data-registry that keeps track of diabetic children, we have experienced a large number of patients who are are children,” said a podiatrist Dr Saiful Haq on Thursday while speaking to journalists during the inauguration of a diabetic center in the city.

Haq went on to say that diabetes was spreading quickly in the country and Pakistan currently is among the countries with the worst population diabetes ratio with more than 40 million registered patients.

The worrying thing, he said, was that just a few years ago in 2019, there were over 30 million diabetic.

The frightening pace of increase in diabetic patients needs urgent interventions, he said, warning the country could have a diabetes epidemic on its hands soon.

“There are large numbers of patients who even do not know about the disease,” he lamented.

What is of particular concern for Dr Haq is the prevalence of type-two diabetes, especially amongst the younger patients.

He said that the major cause for this was the lifestyle being adopted.

“One can witness the obesity amongst children and these children are then more prone to diabetes.

He stressed the need to work for the betterment of our primary healthcare system which focuses on diabetes prevention amongst children.

The best way to approach this is to incorporate necessary education and information at the school level by adding causes and preventive measures in the curriculum.

Dow University of Health Sciences Vice Chancellor Professor Saeed Qureshi said that primary health care is necessary if we want to improve the healthcare system of the country.

“I request the private sector to play its role and establish primary healthcare units in the country,” he commented.

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