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22 Apr 2024, Edition - 3205, Monday

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Health Matters

Kuch Meetha Ho Jaye? Research says diabetes is not caused by eating sugar!

Indrani Thakurata


To confess, the latest research that says Diabetes is not caused by eating sugar, is honey ( please note: it isn’t music but honey) to my ears. I am that stereotypical bengali who loves her mishti, and often can’t resist guping two-three rasgullas in one go. And that obviously calls for some gyan from the rest of the family members, one being– stay away from mishti, or you will surely get diabetes. I had a near scare one time, after which i tortured my basic instinct and craving for sugar; but not anymore, definitely not after this research.

This research says that the connection one draws about diabetes and sugar in a myth. “People who are diabetic should definitely avoid sugar but this research has busted the fact that eating too much sugar can lead to diabetes.For an adult who has normal BMI, 6 teaspoons (25 grams) of sugar per day is recommended by the WHO, and there is no denying that anything in excess is not good for the body but to understand that sugar is found in vegetables fruits and dairy products. When we add sugar to these or consuming these, we are having a small dose of sugar, which is important. But adding sugar to tea, coffee can shoot up beyond the permissible quantity,” says Dr Mukut Bhowmik.

His mother was diagnosed with diabetes when she was in her early twenties. She had a hard time conceiving her first child because of lack of awareness on the same in those days. “ I had a miscarriage and thereafter, I was finding it difficult to conceive. It was after months of tears and frustration that the doctor asked me to get my sugar level checked. Knowing my numbers, he was shocked and realised that they had completely ignored a very obvious scare. But those were the days.

Now, the routine check up for sugar is mandatory,” recounts Mandira Bhowmik, a retired teacher. SHe adds, “I keep telling people that your sugar intake can’t be the reason for diabetes–then I shouldn’t have had it at all–I have hated sweets all my life. There are two types of diabetes, Type 1 and Type 2. In Type 1, insulin-producing cells are destroyed by your immune system while in type 2 diabetes, your body is unable to use the insulin produced by your pancreas. And none of them is caused by having sugar.”

Even Though Type 2 Diabetes has been indirectly linked to obesity and sedentary lifestyle and sugar, but there are no direct linkages. “We have to understand that the hidden sources of sugar like a can of soda, a tablespoon of ketchup or frozen food, cereal bars and other junk food is harmful to the body. They add to your body weight, which in turn can complicate your health in many ways, not necessarily diabetes. It is always advisable to be within limits while you enjoy your meetha or namkeen,” Dr Mukut concludes.

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