Objective is to create awareness on what causes the disease and what should be done to keep blood sugar level under control

The role of diet and lifestyle modification in controlling diabetes, myths surrounding the disease and its management and the risk of end-organ damage are among the key areas of public education that two ongoing exhibitions in the city are highlighting.

Dr. Rajendran's Diabetes Centre and Coimbatore Diabetes Foundation have organised the exhibitions.

While the centre's event is on at President Hall on Avanashi Road, the foundation has organised the other at its Resort Hospital at IOB Colony, near Marudhamalai.

Chief Diabetologist at the Centre V. Rajendran and Managing Trustee of the foundation V. Sekar said on Thursday that the objective of the exhibitions was to create awareness on what caused the disease and what should be done to keep the blood sugar level under control.

“The awareness drive also aims at dispelling myths. Some people claim diabetes can be cured. People should not be taken in by such claims,” Dr. Rajendran said.

The lack of awareness made diabetics vulnerable to exploitation by persons who claimed they had a cure for the disease.

“At the same time, we want to help patients overcome the fear that grips them after they are diagnosed as diabetics,” he said. Diabetics must know that they could lead a normal life with the diet and lifestyle modifications.

“A significant objective of our event is to create awareness specifically on diet. We want to promote the consumption of more fruits and vegetables,” Dr. Sekar said. “Contrary to the myth, the consumption of fruits does not cause harm to diabetics. Fruits contain fructose and this does not require insulin to be processed,” he said.

Many diabetics consumed biscuits more than fruits. Five to six biscuits contained 250 to 300 calories. But, a banana (100 gm) contained only 90 calories, he said.

Dr. Sekar also wanted the public to know that it was not enough to check blood sugar levels only under fasting and after food.

The three months average (HBA 1C) gave the correct level and helped determine the treatment.

Various types of food items that diabetics could have were on display at the exhibitions. Exercises for physical fitness were also being demonstrated.