Video | All Things Diabetes: An Expert Answers Your Queries

Dr Ambrish Mithal, Head of endocrinology and diabetes at Max Hospitals Delhi joins us for a LIVE Q&A session.

3 min read

Can diabetes be reversed?

How often should you be testing your blood sugar?

What foods should you have, and what should you avoid if you are diabetic?

We spoke to Dr Ambrish Mithal, Chairman and Head of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Max Hospitals, and asked him all your questions related to diabetes in a YouTube Live, on 10 August at 6:00 pm.

This LIVE Q&A session was part of Quint FIT's #SugarSmart series, where we decode all aspects of diabetes — prevention, management, myths, and treatment.

Here are some excerpts from the LIVE Q&A session.


Is it true that diabetes skips a generation?

There were a lot of such theories that were floating around decades ago, but it's not true. If either one of your parents has diabetes, you have a pretty good chance of getting it.

So no, it doesn't skip a generation.

Can you reverse diabetes?

If you're in the pre-diabetic stage, and you're young, then yes, it's possible to go back to normal with exercise and diet.

If you've developed full-blown diabetes, then it's trickier.

We call it remission, not reversal because it's not a permanent cure. It just means that for the time being it's under control. This too can only be done by some people. Typically, young people who have just developed diabetes - within the first 5 years of developing diabetes.

"People who are obese, where your diabetes is directly linked to your lifestyle, can definately attain remission with lifestyle changes and weight loss."

We have a lot of remarkable data to show that at least 10 percent weight loss can 'reverse' diabetes in a substantial amount of people.

What foods shoot up your blood sugar?

Apart from the obvious Mithais, sweets and sugar, there are some other foods that one might not consider - foods with hidden sugars, fruits, bread, etc.

We do advise eating fruits, but the amount has to be controlled, or your blood sugar can shoot up.

Some people think fruit juices with no added sugar are safe because they are natural. They may not contain added sugar, but they do contain sugar.

Similarly, people may not think of bread when they think sugar, but white bread can also spike your blood sugar.


When you constantly tell a diabetic person to take care of their diet and weight and calorie intake, is there a risk of developing an eating disorder?

I don't think that people develop eating disorders because of following a doctor's advice. In fact, I wish they would do at least 50 percent of what we tell them.

That being said, eating disorders are issues with the mind, and they are not uncommon in India. But, it's more to do with your personality and if you are prone to compulsive behaviour rather than doctors' advice.

Can desi nuskas like fenugreek-soaked water and flax seeds curb high blood sugar?

They are all good things and they give you nutrients. Flax seeds, for instance, gives you a lot of antioxidants. So these are very good foods to add to your diet plan.

But that is not going to help bring down your blood sugar. So it's good to have them, but not in the hope of substituting your medication if you are diabetic.

Watch the full Q&A video to listen to Dr Mithal decode more diabetes-related queries!

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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