My sister and I attended an event sponsored by Johnson & Johnson’s LifeScan Inc., which intends to increase diabetes awareness among Filipinos and to encourage the blogger attendees to spread the word about this prevailing disease and the importance of proper diabetes management. Given that we have a number of relatives who have diabetes and we aren’t exactly careful with our sugar intake, my sister and I took this opportunity to get to know more about diabetes.
The event started at around 7:30 pm at Max’s Restaurant, Gateway Mall. Guests were encouraged to go through a blood glucose screening before and after dinner. The exercise aimed to show how our meals may affect sugar levels in the body. After most of the guests have taken their blood glucose screening the meal was served. The dinner menu included the following: Roasted Nuts, Soup of the Day, Max’s Fried Chicken, Pancit Canton, Oriental Beef with Mushroom, Sweet and Sour Fish Fillet, Plain Rice, and Frozen Fruit Salad. The guests were also served iced tea and water for refreshments.
Aside from the filling dinner, we were also treated with a starter dose of diabetic essentials from their guest speaker Dr. John Flores, the ASEAN Medical Affairs Director for Johnson & Johnson. The forum covered topics on the effects of protein, fats and carbohydrates in our body, the different types of diabetes and possible complications, the risk factors for the disease, and the numbers involved in diagnosing and managing the disease. The numbers that caught my attention were the Criteria for Diabetes. The first set of numbers is 126–8–2. This means that a reading of 126 mg/dl glucose level after 8 hours of fasting in 2 separate occasions is an indication of diabetes. The second set is 200–2–75; a 200 mg/dl glucose level after 2 hours of consuming 75 grams of glucose normal fasting glucose is 70-100mg/dl is another sign of diabetes. A glucose level of 200 mg/dl plus symptoms of hyperglycemia can tag a person as a diabetic.
The crucial points tackled include:
1. The increasing number of people diagnosed with diabetes.
2. The importance of detecting the disease at an early stage and working closely with the doctors for treatments.
3. What are the preventive measures that we can take in order to protect our family from Type 2 diabetes. i.e. maintaining a healthy lifestyle and an increased awareness about the ailment.
4. Using the proper diabetes management tools.
5. And, how self-monitoring glucose meters like OneTouch Select Simple can help diabetic patients manage their condition.
As for the results of the free blood glucose screening, the reference used was a normal fasting glucose level of 70-100mg/dl, and a 2-hour post meal glucose level of 140mg/dl maximum. My blood sugar level before we started the meal was at 104 mg/dl while my sister was at the max of 140mg/dl. She wasn’t happy with the result of her test and it reflected on her poor appetite and interest in the topics discussed. Her worries slowly melted away as we got to learn about the “numbers”, the modern management tools and technology available for patients. At the end of the event, when we took another reading and her sugar level went down to 119mg/dl and mine went up to 121mg/dl.
The event was topped with a raffle of 10 Healthy Options Snacks and 3 Healthy Living cookbooks. I was one of the lucky winners of the Healthy Options snack, a box of Triple Chocolate Bliss, which I was happy to share with my sister without the guilt of consuming too much sugar.