By Jaime Pilapil
AFFORDABLE medicines are now readily available with the proliferation of pharmacies selling generic drugs.
Being a type 2 diabetic, my doctor asked me not to miss three types of medicines a day. I was spending before not less than 500 pesos for a week of supply of branded medicines. But with generic drugs, I now spend not more than P150 for 30 pieces each of “metformin” and “glibenclamide”, good for two weeks.
I have my blood sugar monitored regularly. As of last Tuesday, my blood sugar was down to 110, well within the limit of 140. Being a diabetic, I am prone to heart diseases. That’s the reason why I take also 80 mg of aspirin daily.
I try to exercise daily, either swimming or basketball.
Diabetes is a lifetime companion. There is no cure. Keep your blood sugar at normal level and you avoid harming your organs and lessen the risk of getting heart disease.
Although I seldom get sick, I really don’t know if I am healthy either. My weight is around 140 lbs.
Type 2 diabetes is presently the leading cause of adult blindness, kidney failure and non-traumatic limb loss in the country today, making it the ninth leading cause of death.
Medical records said one in 25 Filipinos has diabetes. A health official said presently, there are around 4 million Filipinos living with type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is more serious as the patient is totally dependent on insulin injection.
Medical experts said type 2 diabetes is often caused as a result of poor diet and lack of exercise. In my case, it is genetic and poor eating and lazy habits.
In short, you must have a healthy lifestyle as advised by doctors, including Health Secretary Francisco Duque, who jogs 14 kilometers every other day. He also regularly lifts weights to tone his muscles. “I have to lift weight to tone my muscles,” he said showing his chiseled shoulders. Maybe by 2010 he will have the courage to show his ripped physique during campaign sorties.
He said Filipinos must eat low salty food and take more salad, vegetable, fish and fruit juices. Don’t smoke, he warned. Lung cancer is a top killer disease in the country, next only to CVD (cardio vascular diseases).
Doctors said there is an alarming increase of female smokers, including among high school students. Lung cancer is now the number three cause of death for women.
Every Filipino must take nutritious food, a well-balanced diet. Colorful vegetable give various vitamins we need to fight bacteria and viruses.
Duque even issued a directive to the National Center for Diseases and Control to monitor the meals being sold in fastfood restaurants if their recipes are high on bad cholesterol, which if not controlled will lead to strokes. Heart diseases are still the number one cause of deaths in the country. Salt and high blood pressure are indeed two silent killers.
The next time you go to the doctor, ask him if your heart is in bad shape.
Health officials said although affordable medicines are now readily available, prevention is still the best option.


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