Speakers at a programme on Tuesday said that the number of patients suffering from diabetes is rising at an alarming rate throughout the country.
They blamed mental stress, smoking, tendency to eat junk food and physical inactivity for the growing number of diabetic patients.
According to the statistics of International Diabetic Federation, 71 lakh people have now been suffering from the disease and of them 35 lakh are women.
They made the remarks at a seminar jointly organised by Diabetic Association of Bangladesh and International Diabetes Federation marking the World Diabetes Day.
The theme of this year is ‘Women and Diabetes - Our Right to a Healthy Future’.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroz Chumki was present at the seminar as the chief guest while President of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh Prof Dr Azad Khan chaired the event.
In her speech, Meher Afroz Chumki said that 20 women out of 100 develop diabetes during their pregnancy which turns into type-2 diabetes.
In many cases, children may also develop diabetes, she added.
The state minister said that people who have diabetes may also develop diseases of kidneys, hearts or eyes.
She called upon all to take balanced diet for prevention of diabetes.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Azad Khan said a project has been taken with the initiative of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh to provide treatment to women before pregnancy to prevent diabetes.
Some 50 pre-pregnancy treatment centres have been opened at various places all over the country with the help of law, justice and parliamentary ministry where free treatment will be given till November 14 next year, he added.
Dr Azad Khan also said that pregnant women who have been lacking in malnutrition may develop diabetes. He underscored the need for raising awareness to keep a curb on gestational diabetes.
“And thus we can protect our future generation from the disease,” he added.
Meanwhile, different organisations have observed the day by holding various programmes.
To mark the day, Novo Nordisk has launched a nationwide diabetes awareness and education campaign which will continue till June in 2018.
As part of the campaign, Novo Nordisk in partnership with Diabetic Association of Bangladesh (DAB) and Padma Textiles took out 150 processions around the country.
The biggest procession started from in front of the national museum in the capital.
Country’s top healthcare professionals, adults and kids living with diabetes and changing diabetes brand ambassador Mashrafe Bin Mortaza took part in the event.
Novo Nordisk will also screen 15,000 pregnant women and train 5,000 healthcare professionals, including 2,000 gynecologists, on the risk of diabetes and modern treatment options.
Apollo Hospital, Dhaka also observed the day by arranging a series of events. They took out a procession at Bashundhara Residential Area, tested patients’ glucose level and checked their blood pressure free of charge.