Ganesh Chaturthi 2018: Here's how to manage diabetes during the festivities

Expert shares five key tips

‘Vighnaharta’ or remover of obstacles is a title most commonly associated with Lord Ganesha and in fact millions of ardent devotees invoke his name and seek blessings before commencing any new business or work assignment. In addition to welcoming smaller idols into homes, many devotees throng various well-known mandals to have a glimpse of their favourite deity even if this means standing in long winding queues for many hours or even few days.

This is a season of festivities since Lord Ganesha isn’t merely welcomed into homes but also hearts.

However, most of us also welcome delicacies such as all-time favourite ‘modak’ and other sweetmeats into our stomachs. Gorging on various sweetmeats is ingrained in our culture and considered part of the festivities. Visiting friends and relatives also insists that all must partake in the festivities through generous helping of sweetmeats and look down upon any resistance or individuals taking smaller portions.

Individuals afflicted from certain aliments however need to take special care while indulging in these gastronomical celebrations since it can take a toll on their health. One of the ailments that need special attention is diabetes and with all the sweetmeats around – the resolve to resist these gastronomical delights could be tough.

However, there can be a middle path wherein these gastronomical delights could be enjoyed while taking certain precautions.

Few of the small measures that could ensure diabetes afflicted individuals keep sugar levels in check include:

1. Opt for delicacies with natural sweeteners: Modaks and Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations are synonymous with each other. One would furthermore assume that steamed modaks are much healthier since it is not fried. However, the high level of sugar content makes the delicacy risky for individuals suffering from ailments such as diabetes. Hence, sugar could be substituted with natural alternatives such as jaggery, dates or figs. It would be appropriate to point out that jaggery is rich in iron and assists in cleansing the liver by flushing out nasty toxins from the body. In addition, dates and figs are extremely healthy and provide the body with wholesome energy.

2. Adopt healthy lifestyle: One mustn’t merely remain cautious during festive season but throughout the year. Adopting a healthy lifestyle through physically active routine and regular exercises helps one to remain fit and thereby keep ailments at bay. For this, one doesn’t merely need to put in physical effort but also be mentally prepared and strong willed to take it to completion.

3. Controlling portion size and timing: Individuals should consume smaller portion sizes rather than indulge in binge eating. This will ensure that blood sugar levels of diabetes afflicted individuals remain in check. In addition, consumption of limited portion sizes should be at regular intervals to avoid any health
related complications. One must also select the right timing to consume food and consumption during irregular hours such as late nights must be avoided since it could affect the health.

4. Selecting healthy food: It is a misconception that all sweetmeats are unhealthy and affect one’s health. There are today numerous healthy food options available in the market that don’t merely taste good but also provide one wholesome energy. One must also remember that healthy food doesn’t mean expensive food – it is a wrongly held myth that all healthy foods are expensive.

5. Undertake timely health check-ups: Individuals need to undertake timely and regular health check-ups, especially blood sugar levels to find out about diabetes. Only if it is diagnosed on time can quick medical intervention be initiated so that chances of being in control are better. One must remember that timely and regular health check-ups allow an individual to not only take care of it but also remain fit.

In conclusion, it would be right to point out that food is an important part of celebrations, especially during festivities but one must also ensure that health issues aren’t ignored or put into the backburner.

This caution is particularly true for people suffering from ailments such as diabetes since good health means festivities everyday rather than only particular days of the year.

Article authored by Dr Varsha Khatry, Head- Medical and Scientific Affair, Roche Diabetes Care India. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and they do not reflect in any way those of Roche Diabetes Care India Pvt. Ltd.

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