Myths & Superstitions in Diabetes

Popular misconceptions about Diabetes


  • Diabetes is caused by eating lots of sweets ( Diabetes is not caused by eating lots of sweets - the actual cause of diabetes is the loss of control by the body on the levels of digested sugars- Carbohydrates; a patient cannot be blamed for having pushed himself/ herself into being Diabetic just by eating some chocolates or sweets.) Also see- Diabetes more than just Blood Sugar....
  • Honey & Jaggery do not increase blood sugar (Honey, jaggery, - Shakkar, demerara sugar, all are high calory sweeteners and steeply increase blood sugar, While sugar- sucrose- is highly refined , these are forms of sugars with other compounds which give them a specific flavour except sweetness, but nevertheless they have same effect on blood sugar-thus their intake has to be controlled)
  • Diabetics should not eat any fruits at all (On the contrary Diabetics should eat more fruits yes they have to be choosey about which ones to eat, but fruits are very essential in a diabetic diet. fruits provide both soluble and non-soluble fibres many of them are virtually zero calory- like watermelons, melons, citrus varieties, pears, peach, apricots etc. but avoid very sweet and fleshy ones like banana, mango )
  • Aspirin is harmful for Diabetics (Aspirin is not harmful at all for diabetics and infact it may be as essential part of the prescription of patients with CAD, hypertension or CVD's)
  • Rise in blood sugar levels for few days is negligible ( Complications of Diabetes occur because of long term damage to tissues and blood vessels , not because of few days- so blood sugar has to be consistently controlled so as to avoid continuing damage )
  • Herbal products like Karela and Neem are panacea (They can be harmful also- such as toxicity to kidneys from neem seeds, not all parts of the same plants have same properties, the plants may themselves be contaminated because of atmospheric, soil and underground water contamination).
  • One should not start Diabetes medication because if once it is started you cannot stop it ( What's important is not that one is taking some tablets or not, after all we can easily take upto 250 gms of food at a time ( which we usually do )1/2 a gm or even 1 gm does not make any difference- What really counts is that the dreadful complications of Diabetes should be avoided at all costs )
  • Once the Blood Sugar level is controlled Medication can be discontinued (The insulin making capacity in Diabetics is steadily declining- so without any efforts blood sugar level is not going to get controlled, it is only getting controlled due to the effect of the medicine, exercise or diet control; Diabetes melitus type 2- is not treated ( atleast as of yet) it is only managed; so if one discontinues the efforts the blood sugar level may again shoot up )