Welcome to M.V Hospital for Diabetes, established by late Prof. M.Viswanathan, Doyen of Diabetology in India in 1954 as a general hospital. In 1971 it became a hospital exclusively for Diabetes care. It has, at present,100 beds for the treatment of diabetes and its complications.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Nutrition Week

Sheela Paul
-    Dietitian


National Nutrition Week is celebrated from September 1 to 7 every year.  Good nutrition is the focal point of health and well-being. In other words, it allows you to be strong, provides energy to do the things you want to do, and makes you look and feel good.

Food groups

Most of us know that the basic food groups are cereals and millets, pulses and legumes, green leafy and other vegetables, fruits, milk and milk products, nuts and oil seeds, meat and meat products.

But the question is HOW MUCH?



•    Make a habit of using  healthy food preparation methods.

•    Choose budget conscious meals with a focus on seasonal variety.

•    Appreciate the tastes and textures of wholesome foods.

•    Read and understand the food labels and making healthy choices.

•    Maintain a food log andrecord everything you eat and drink for at least five days. This will show you the  strengths and weaknesses of your diet and help you create a plan for eating more nutritiously in the future.

•    Eating breakfast helps you to consume less calories throughout the day, it will kick start your metabolism, improve your mental focus and give you energy.

•    Drink water, not colas. Sugary drinks are one of the causes for the nation’s overweight problem  andis the main source of empty calories in children’s diets.

•    Use salt sparingly.

•    Portion controlis key to healthy eating. Reduce cereal intake and increase vegetable intake. Half your dinner plate should contain 1 cup vegetables + 1 cup greens + 1 cup salad. A quarter of the plate should contain 1 cupcooked riceor3 chappathisand  the other quarter of the  plate  should have 1 cup of dhal/whole grams, half portion non-veg and one cup curds.

•    Nuts -  These are  great sources of healthy monounsaturated fats. Nuts are one of the best sources of omega 3- a heart healthy fatty acid. In addition to omega 3, nuts contain the amino acid, L-arginine. L-arginine may relax blood vessels making them more flexible and less prone to blood clots. Arginine has also been shown to promote wound healing, and boost immune function.

This  week,  evaluate what you usually eat  and make the necessary changes to your diet.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Foods that heal …

Ivy Gourd (tendli, tindora, kovakkai)

It is seen throughout the year on shelves in vegetable shops and is classified as an herb in Thai and Ayurvedic medicine. Ivy gourd contains beta carotene – a good source of Vit. A that is good for the eyesight,  and Vit. C which protects from cold and flu. Consuming it can help regulate blood glucose. Some research also supports its use as an antioxidant. In traditional medicine, it has been used to treat fever, asthma, bronchitis and jaundice. It is also known to have anti- histaminine properties. Its leaves are used as a poultice in treating skin eruptions.


One of the oldest spices, cinnamon possesses many health benefits one of them being a modest effect in lowering blood glucose levels in people with poorly controlled Type 2 diabetes.
It also has anti- microbial, anti-fungal, anti-tumour, blood pressure lowering, cholesterol and lipid lowering and gastro protective properties.

It can be used to add flavour to sweet as well as savoury foods. 

Spend Less, Eat Well.

With food costs on the rise it is high time to see how one can reduce money spent on weekly shopping. You can cut costs and still have a tasty and healthy diet. Small changes can bring big savings in the long run. 

Plan ….

Write down the menu for the week and shop for the exact quantities. It prevents you from buying things you don’t need.

Shop at the right time

Don’t go shopping on an empty stomach as you may be tempted to buy all the wrong things

Look out for offers.

Keep the receipts and make a note of your spending 

You need not be a loyal customer.

Compare costs and go to the shop that gives you the best deal.

Have a meat- free day

Meats and fish tend to be the most expensive item on the shopping list. You can have a healthy diet without using meat/fish. Replace meats with comparatively cheaper sources of protein such as beans and lentils.

Forget ready-to- eat meals

They cost more and are high in sugar, fat and salt. Instead, cook in bulk and freeze.

Bake your own bread and biscuits

You don’t need‘diabetic’ foods.

What you cook at home will be just as good and more economical. Just follow your dietitian’s advice.

Be brand savvy

Try using the supermarket brand. They are usually cheaper than other brands. You won’t find any difference in the taste.

Don’t waste. 

A lot of food usually goes waste. Don’t pile up food on your plate or others’ plates. Take only as much as is needed and come back for a second helping.

Leftovers can be frozen or stored to be reheated or made into another dish. 

Buy seasonal foods. 

Choose in -season fruits and vegetable as they are fresher and cheaper and contain large amounts of the  nutrients they are supposed to provide.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Eat Right During RAMADAN

Aadarsh & ROHINI (Dietitians)


During Ramadan people fast for a month during the day and feast at the break of dawn and at dusk. This can be a cause of serious dehydration due to no water consumption during peak sunny hours of the day and muscle loss due to lack of food intake. Mealtimes are not regular and the body may not get the nutrition it needs which can lead to health problems since the fasting continues for a month. Here are some ways in which the diet can be modified during this period of fasting.

Those who fast during Ramadan often end up overeating which can lead to weight gain, acidity and digestion problems. Experts say one must follow a proper diet plan, avoid fried food and red meat and exercise regularly.

People with diabetes should be careful and avoid hypoglycemia (low sugar level in blood).They needto pay special attention to their condition all year around and especially in the month of Ramadan as they become vulnerable to several complications during fasting. They should follow doctors instructions as they face risks due to changes in eating patterns that might cause serious complications like hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia . It is recommended that they also check their glucose levels twice while fasting and once after breaking the fast. 

Dietary recommendation during Ramadan:

- Eat food items like grains, barley, wheat, oats, millet, semolina, beans, lentils, bran, green peas, apricots, prunes and almonds.
- Avoid big meals and eat slowly.
- Drink juice to avoid digestive problems.
- Avoid deep fried food and red meat as it causes acidity and digestion problems.
- Have proper protein intake.
- Diabetic patients should be more careful and avoid hypoglycemia (low sugar level in blood).

     Start the day with water followed by vegetable sandwiches or oats with veggies and nuts. In the evenings, break your fast with water again and eat dates and fruits as well. After the prayers, take rice, rotis, salad, vegetables, dhal or chicken.

It is important to eat a good amount of vegetables to provide enough nutrition to the body. If you have a sweet craving, satisfy it by including fruits in your meal as it will help digest the food better. Include fibre and protein-rich foods. Avoid eating fried, oily and heavy food items as they cannot be easily digested and can make your stomach bloated later.

• Start your day with:
oats/brown rice/roties made of wheat , ragi, jowar fruits, and nuts
Milk, curds, and buttermilk
• Break your fast with fruits and opt for the following:
• salad/ soup
chicken/ fish – steamed, boiled, grilled, roasted or paneer
green veggies or mix  vegetables
• Drink plenty of water before you sleep to rehydrate yourself and rest well to rejuvenate your body for the next day’s fast.

It is safe to exercise during Ramadan. Exercise at the right time and at low to moderate intensity.

Exercises recommended:

1. Low intensity cardio exercise like walking or cycling. It helps in burning calories and improves stamina.
2. Low intensity resistance training. It helps to maintain your muscle strength.
3. Stretching exercise. Full body stretching.It helps to improve flexibility and also in detoxification.
4. Floor exercises like free squats, pushups, calf raises etc. It improves your functional activities.
5. Yoga and meditation. It helps in detoxification.
6. Low intensity group classes which helps to burn calories and with less difficulty as you are exercising with others.
7. Exercise for 20 to 40 minutes.
8. Don't exercise during the fasting phase. Exercise eitherbefore or after the meal. Exercising during fasting   will burn muscles.9. Avoid high intensity exercises like high speed running, stepper, heavy weight lifting, high intense group classes as it can lead to joint or muscle injuries and complications like low blood pressure, hypoglycemia, dizziness, etc.

During Ramadan people with diabetes should manage their diet, physical exercise, glucose levels and watch out for any complications that might emerge

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Eat Well, Sleep Well, Work Well.

A large number of office- going people are getting insulin resistant diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol at 20-25 years! Many surveys show that bad work habits are making office workers sick.

Sitting for hours at the desk results in poor posture  which leads to bad circulation, muscle strain and fatigue and  back problems, eye problems,  and carpal tunnel syndrome.  It also results in obesity which moves on to diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, deep vein thrombosis, or even fatal blood clots.

Take breaks from your work. Get up and move. Go for a brisk  4-5 minute walk every few hours. Use  flats or  shoes that fit well and are comfortable.

Poor eating habits such as skipping breakfast or having a working lunch, or eating junk food,  not including fresh fruit and vegetable in the diet, putting off visits to the restroom, drinking cups of coffee and ignoring  water add to the distress. .

Don’t skip breakfast. You cannot focus on an empty stomach. Choose carefully when you order food. 


It is better to bring home-cooked lunch and eat in the lunchroom. Include fruits and nuts in your diet. Carry some healthy mid- day snack. Drink plenty of water. It helps you stay hydrated and concentrate better. 

Long commutes result in sedentary time , less sleep,  and expanding waistlines. Walk  or cycle to work if possible. Lack of sleep makes a person more irritable, anxious and depressed. Sleep deprivation makes you less efficient and you can make bad decisions.

Get at least 6-8 hours of deep sleep every day. Drink less coffee and tea and have the last one at 4 p.m.to help you unwind.

Tip of the Week

Tip of the Week
Choose the right shoe and socks