Increased awareness could arrest ugly diabetes trends

I is almost three months now since Jonathan Sigauke (24) was diagnosed with diabetes mellitus type 1, yet he still has not come to terms with the thought of living with the non-communicable disease (NCD).

BY KENNEDY NYAVAYA

The thought that diabetes is a chronic illness fills Sigauke with fear and uncertainty about the future.

If he could turn back the hands of time, the young carpenter would have a lifestyle shift in terms of his diet, but this is rather too late and his only shot at life now is about adapting to the new reality.

“Not even the doctors were sure what could have caused this problem and it could be my past occasional drinking habits or the love for sweet things, but all that matters now is that I have to live longer,” Sigauke said.

His new diet is now limited to mostly vegan, non-sweet and lesser carbohydrates, fats and protein. And he had to give up smoking and drinking.

“I am lucky to have visited the hospital early before the, disease became extreme, otherwise I could have suffered complications like loss of eyesight or leg amputation as a result of this illness,” Sigauke said.

He added that rapid weight loss prompted him to visit the hospital.

While he was fortunate to go to hospital before a sudden collapse as is the case with other unknowing patients, it is reported an alarming 50% of those suffering from the disease are not aware of their condition and risk a tragic revelation.

For Sigauke, the greatest tragedy would have been having his limb cut off, kidney failure or going blind and each time such thoughts pass his mind he gets restless.

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