“Die-a-bit-es” or is it?

3 min read

Vanessa, a friend of mine used to call it “Die-a-bit-es” in her totally exaggerating tone!!

 Admit it, most of us just shrug at even the mention of diabetes (or any lifestyle disease really), don’t we? We think we are invincible!! Young, energetic, healthy (at present), why should we spare even a second thinking about something that hasn’t happened yet!.

It’s either that or we are suffering from overexposure and inevitable indifference. Indifference towards acceptance that we are vulnerable…that the problem exists… thus we fail to devise any prevention strategy!!

Answer following questions very honestly-

  1. Do you smoke?
  2. Do you do any exercise, even mild ones(house chores, walking) at all?
  3. Is your work sedentary (sitting for >6 hours continuously each day)?
  4. Diabetes runs in the family?
  5. (Women) do you wear medium-Large size pants, (Men) are you wearing XL size pants??

If your answer is ‘yes’ to more than two questions on this list, you are at risk for developing diabetes (and an assortment of other lifestyle disorders!)

What must you do now?

Stop Breathing! Stop Eating! Stop Sitting and Stop Wearing Pants!! In fact, while you are at it might as well cut off all the ties with all the family members!!

No Seriously, do it..because all of this is going to be so much easier than what I am going to suggest next…

3 lifestyle changes that will change your life-

Number 1, Quit smoking

Seriously, quit smoking! Time and again studies have shown that smoking almost doubles your chances of developing diabetes and heart disease (and cancer..)! Need I say more?

If you need help, it is always available, you just have to ask for it!

It won’t be easy and it certainly won’t happen overnight but the health benefits will be worth all the physical and emotional turmoil!

Number 2, Dexercise


Desk+Exercise=Dexercise. It’s an old concept really! So what if you have no time getting your butt out of that office? You can shake it well within the constraints of your office walls…Try these simple exercises-

  1. Instead of emailing your colleague for trivial matters, walk over to their cubicle…
  2. 60 seconds of jumping jacks: It is what it sounds like, literally jump for a minute to get your heart rate up!
  3. While sitting, raise both your arms up and start tapping your foot rapidly on the floor. Do it for half a minute. Repeat 2–3 times.
  4. Take stairs (think aerobics!)

It may seem silly in the beginning but the benefits are tremendous as studies show that too much sitting increases your risk of diabetes, heart disease and is linked to decreased lifespan! Try these exercises at your desk

Number 3, Increase your dietary fiber intake

Dietary fiber, in simpler terms, is the part of food that our digestive system can not digest. Thus it is not absorbed by the body and adds bulk to the stool. It is mainly found in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts. Wellknown health benefits of Dietary Fibers include relieving constipation, lowering blood cholesterol levels, weight loss etc. But there is one less discussed health benefit and that is “Improved Insulin Sensitivity”

Yes, studies show that increased dietary fiber intake improves insulin sensitivity which can, in turn, reduce your chances of developing diabetes!

So, here are few tips to increase your dietary fiber intake-


a. Keep your fruits where you can see them and reach them very easily..remember, when hungry we go for things that are right in front of our eyes!!


b. Add one serving of fruit or vegetable to each meal: add fresh fruit slices/dried fruits over breakfast oats; add cucumber-tomato slices to lunch plate and add raita of some sorts to your dinner.

Check out Archanaskitchen for some interesting raita recipes…

c. Make at least half your grains whole grains : Choosing whole wheat atta instead of refined flour (maida), whole wheat bread instead of white bread, brown rice instead of white rice, whole grain pasta instead of white one are some ways of getting more dietary fiber.

Now those were my 3 lifestyle modification suggestions..and I know; I know I was being sarcastic in the beginning…but I say this with utmost genuineness-

That I am aware it is easier said than done; but every small lifestyle modification counts. A better health is not a result of any single drastic habit/lifestyle change but is accumulation of many small ones…

So wish you all the might for taking the first baby step in the right direction👍👍👍

 For more such tips and stories join our Newsletter,

Soniya Nikam, MS, RD.

Soniya Nikam, MS, RD.

She is a Registered Dietitian who does not believe in dieting; She has a Master's Degree in Nutrition but she is not your "I know it all Nutrition Guru!"; She loves food but loves talking about food even more. Her articles are a direct reflection of her personal quest where nutrition science meets real life! Oh, and she is owned by a 3 m.o. naughty kitten :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *