Tuesday, 29 October 2013


The importance of healthy living cannot be overemphasized.There is a popular saying that a man too busy to take care of his health is like a mechanic too busy to take care of his tools. It is said that he who has health has hope and he who has hope has everything.

Healthy living should be a habit and over time,its positive effects on health become obvious.
Live healthy and less trips are made to the doctors.
Live healthy and on the long run,it saves money.
Regular exercise and eating healthy are some components of healthy living and are easy to do.All that is needed is determination.

Eating healthy and regular exercise go a long way in preventing being overweight and obese.

They are important aspects in the management of chronic diseases like hypertension and diabetes.

With the importance of healthy living at the back of our minds,we at The Nigeria Diabetes Online Community (NGDOC) decided to go on a healthy living campaign.
Randomly,we chose the ancient city of Abeokuta,the capital of Ogun State and Sagamu, a semi-urban local government area in Ogun State.

The aim of this campaign was to interact with as many people as possible,have an idea of what they consider to be components of healthy living,understand their views,learn from them and impart some knowledge about healthy living as it relates to obesity and diabetes.
The people of Abeokuta were receptive and willing to share.Most importantly,they were willing to learn.
We spoke to people individually and in groups,and I must say for me,the experience was fun and enlightening.

Topics covered included Healthy eating and the importance of exercise.

I spoke to a 65 year old grandmother who exercises regularly and eats healthy.Not looking bad for her age right?  

We also talked about Diabetes and its types and we realized that a lot of work still needs to be done in raising awareness for diabetes.We did try in our capacity to enlighten them as much as time would permit on how healthy living may on the long run reduce the risk of developing obesity and diabetes and how healthy living is important in the management of diabetes.

Most of them were all ears,and we were glad!Some people requested us to come back for another campaign in Abeokuta.

They obviously understand than knowledge is power.
We at The NGDOC intend to take the healthy living campaign to as many places as possible.

If you'd like us to visit a particular place,please let us know.We'll be glad to come and say hi.
Good health isn't something that can be bought.You can however increase your chances of having good health by living healthy.
Make a positive change in your lifestyle today.

For more information you can contact us on thengdoc@gmail.com, follow us @theNGdoc and visit our website www.ngdoc.com

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Uncontrolled Diabetes and its Complications

Uncontrolled Diabetes and its complications

If blood sugar is consistently high, over time it can affect the heart, eyes, kidneys, nerves, and other parts of the body. Most people living with uncontrolled diabetes don't realize that they have a higher chance to suffer from certain conditions until the symptoms begin to manifest. These other conditions that manifest along side diabetes are often referred to as Complications of diabetes.

Factors that increase the risk of developing complications include: Excessive alcohol intake, Smoking, Obesity, Lack of regular exercise.

Uncontrolled diabetes affects many major organs, including the heart, blood vessels, nerves, eyes and kidneys and when this occurs, it can lead to certain conditions such as:
Heart diseases and Stroke; Retinopathy and Eye complications; Kidney Diseases; Foot ulcers and Infections.
Other diabetes related conditions are: skin infections, sores and itching; dental diseases e.g. Gingivitis, periodontitis; Dementia and depression, hearing loss etc.

Uncontrolled Diabetes and the respiratory system:

  The effects of protective proteins on the surface of the lungs are neutralized leading to a higher risk of influenza, pneumonia, tuberculosis.

Uncontrolled Diabetes and the Genitourinary system: 

    Women with Uncontrolled diabetes are said to face a higher risk of urinary tract infections and these are relatively more difficult to treat.

Relationship between Uncontrolled Diabetes and certain heart conditions:

    The term "Diabetic Heart Disease" (DHD) refers to heart disease that develops in people who have Uncontrolled diabetes. Examples of heart conditions involved in DHD include: Diabetic Cardiomyopathy (enlargement of the heart muscles) , Heart failure (a condition in which the heart fails to function as a pump), Coronary Heart disease (narrowing of the blood vessels that supply oxygen rich blood to the heart) etc.

Effect on blood vessels and nerves:

    Damage to blood vessels that nourish nerves causes tingling, numbness, burning or pain that usually begins at the tips of the toes or fingers.

Effect on the kidneys:

      Uncontrolled diabetes can damage the delicate filtering system of the kidneys and can lead to kidney failure or irreversible end-stage kidney disease.

Effect on the eyes:

      Diabetic retinopathy potentially leads to blindness and increases the risk of other serious vision conditions such as cataracts and glaucoma.

Effect on the skin, gums, feet and other organs:

Uncontrolled Diabetes may leave one more susceptible to skin problems, including bacterial and fungal infections.
Nerve damage in the feet or poor blood flow to the feet increases the risk of various foot complications e.g. blisters and serious infections.

Gum infections also may be a concern, especially if you have a history of poor dental hygiene.
Uncontrolled diabetes may also lead to lower than normal bone mineral density, increasing the risk of osteoporosis.

The complications of diabetes are far less common or severe in people who have well controlled blood sugar levels and blood pressure.

The good news is that the risk of developing complications is greatly reduced by healthy eating, regular physical activity, well controlled Blood Pressure, reduced stress etc.
It is also very important to follow your treatment plan for diabetes and see your doctor for ongoing care.

For those who already suffer from Diabetes related conditions, follow the treatment plan as is advised by your healthcare providers. This may help avoid or delay further serious problems.

This Article is written by Ella Awele Nwaokolo a student of medicine and surgery of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Ogun State, Nigeria.

To be a guest blogger on the Nigeria diabetes online community blog kindly send your articles to us on thengdoc@gmail.com and follow us on @theNGdoc and like our Facebook page

Sunday, 20 October 2013


In line with our commitment to  the prevention and care of diabetes in Nigeria, we have lined up activities and programs for the World Diabetes Day on November 14,2013.

We are organizing a World Diabetes Day Essay Competition with the theme:

"DIABETES IN NIGERIA: Protecting the future".


This essay is aimed at improving people's awareness and knowledge on diabetes and its care.


1. To qualify you must be following @theNGdoc
2. Your essay must not be more than 500 words
3. Entries open on November 1, 2013 and close on November 10, 2013
4. All entries must be in MS Word format and sent as an attachment to NGDOC thengdoc(at)gmail(dot)com
5. After submitting your entry, you MUST make a tweet at @theNGdoc

 [e.g. I just submitted my entry for @theNGdoc World Diabetes Day essay competition #WDDEssay]

7. Your essay can be in any format i.e. can be in form of a story, poem, etc.
8. Your essay will be tested for creativity and originality.

Winners will be announced on November 14, 2013.

Star prize is N20,000.
Top 3 articles will be featured on our website and blog

Wednesday, 16 October 2013


A diabetes diet is simply a healthy eating plan that is high in nutrients, low in bad fat and moderate in calories. It is a healthy diet for anyone!
The only difference is the need to pay more attention to some of the food choices most notably the carbohydrates eaten. Eating right is vital when trying to prevent or control diabetes.

While exercise is also important, what is eaten has the biggest impact when it comes to weight loss. Its important to note that nutritional needs are virtually the same for everyone else as for PWDs, no special foods or complicated diets are necessary.

Speaking of carbohydrates being part of the notable choice we eat; Carbohydrates have a big impact on blood sugar levels more than fats and protein but its not always necessary to avoid them. Its always good to be smart about what type of carbohydrate taken.

 It is best to limit highly refined carbohydrates like white bread, rice, snack foods, carbonated drinks, candy e.t.c; focusing on high-fibre complex carbohydrates (also known as slow-release carbohydrates) instead.

Slow-release carbohydrates help keep blood sugar levels even because they are digested more slowly, thus preventing the body from producing too much insulin.
They also provide lasting energy and help stay full longer.


1. Instead of of highly refined carbohydrates, try these high-fibre options:
 Non-starchy vegetables, beans and fruits such as apple,pears, peaches, berries, bananas, mangoes e.t.c. Grains in the least processed state possible such as brown rice, white barley, millet, wheat berries e.t.c

2. Limit concentrated sweets – including high calorie foods with a low glycemic index, such as ice cream.  Reduce fruit juice to no more than one cup a day.
Avoid sugar sweetened drinks.

3. Eat a healthful type of protein at most meals such as beans, fish, skinless chicken e.t.c.

4. Choose foods with healthy fats such as olive-oil, nuts (almond, walnuts and avocados).
Limit saturated fats from dairy and other animal products like cheese, yoghurt etc. 

5. Completely avoid partially hydrogenated fats (Trans-fat), which are usually found in fast foods and many packaged foods.

6. Have complete three meals a day (do not skip breakfast).

7. Eat slowly and stop when full. Having Diabetes does not mean eliminating sugar. If you have diabetes, you can still enjoy a small serving of your favourite dessert now and then. 
The key to it is MODERATION.

But maybe you have a sweet tooth and the thought of cutting back on sweets sounds almost as bad as cutting them out together.
The good news about diet is that cravings do go away. The more your habits become healthier, the more the food you seem to love becomes too rich or too sweet and you may find yourself craving healthier options instead.

This Article is written by Damilola Shobiye a Student of Nutrition and Dietetics from Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Ogun State, Nigeria.

To be our Guest Blogger on the nigeria diabetes online community kindly send your article to us on thengdoc@gmail.com, follow us on @theNGdoc and like our facebook page


This is the period where our dear muslim friends, family and colleagues fast for a period of time. Fasting during Ramadan, a holy month of Islam, is an obligatory duty for all healthy adult Muslims and its duration varies between 29 and 30 days. Its timing changes with respect to seasons. Depending on the geographical location and season, the duration of the daily fast may range from a few to more than 20 hours.
Muslims who fast during Ramadan must abstain from eating, drinking, use of oral medications, and smoking from predawn to after sunset; however, there are no restrictions on food or fluid intake between sunset and dawn. Most people consume two meals per day during this month, one after sunset, referred to in Arabic as Iftar (breaking of the fast meal), and the other before dawn, referred to as Suhur (predawn).
Now the question is, what food or fluid intake do one use to break or start this fasting?

As we know, fasting is not meant to create excessive hardship on the Muslim individual. Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder which may place one at high risk for various complications if the pattern and amount of meal and fluid intake is markedly altered.
Due to loss of energy, weakness and dehydration. Most people rush for food that contains carbohydrate. Foods like rice, yam, spaghetti etc, inorder to gain their strength back.
This is not right, it only increases blood sugar which makes one restless and dizzy, which only makes matter worse.
So how can we live healthy, during this fasting period?

1.) Water should be the first intake as soon as one wants to break fast. We must ensure we take as much as possible throughout the evening till dawn. It will help the circulation of blood in ones system, reduce dehydration and cleanse it. Avoid drinks with caffeine.

2.) Start meal with fruits. Fruits like watermelon, oranges, blueberries-Blueberries are awesome choice. They are packed with dietary fiber, vitamin C, and flavonoids. Flavonoids are phytonutrients and help to boost ones immune system and fight off infection. They could also help fight off bad cholesterol and keep the heart and arteries healthy

 Grapefruits-They are packed with antioxidants, especially in the ruby red variety. It lowers bad cholesterol by 20% and triglycerides by 17%.

3.) Take in enough protein. Due to not eating anything for over 17-20hrs, the body will be feeding on itself. So there is need to rebuild this areas. Source of protein that will be good includes; 
Tofu-Even if not a vegetarian, tofu is a great product to integrate in diet. It is made from soy, which is high in niacin, folate, zinc, potassium, iron, and the fatty acid alpha-linolenic. This can turn into the hugely beneficial omega-3 fatty acid
Beans-Beans are a great alternative because they are high in fiber and protein. They are also packed with vitamins and minerals like folate, iron, magnesium, and potassium.

Also, other meals like brown rice, amala (instead of yam flour try plaintain flour), wheat flour( easily digested), non-starchy vegetables, fish, skinless chicken etc.

While the iftar meal is a celebration time, try not to overeat. Keep sensible portions in mind and follow the same guidelines for healthy eating done during the rest of the year with emphasis on whole grains, lean sources of meat, fish and poultry and small amounts of heart healthy fats.

This Article is written by Damilola Shobiye a Student of Nutrition and Dietetics from Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Ogun State, Nigeria.

To be our Guest Blogger on the nigeria diabetes online community kindly send your article to us on thengdoc@gmail.com, follow us on @theNGdoc and like our facebook page