Thursday, March 25, 2010

China and diabetes

The hotel I stay at while in China sets across the street from a beautiful central park. On the weekends, families gather to play on the various attractions. In the late afternoon they migrate to the hotel with children in tow to enjoy a discount buffet dinner. The odd thing is, most of the children are fat, and by fat I mean fat by American standards. It got me wondering about diabetes. I did some research, China is the new diabetes capital.

For each person, doctors measured blood sugar levels up to two hours after subjects had swallowed a sugar solution or, in cases where diabetes was suspected, eaten a bun. Because people with diabetes can't use the sugar in their blood effectively, a high blood sugar level indicates disease.

Based on their findings, the researchers calculate that about 50 million men and 42 million women have diabetes, or almost 1 in 10 adults. And in most cases, the disease is undiagnosed.

Could it be the ubiquitous McDonalds, Burger Kings, Pizza Huts, and KFC restaurants that clog every commercial complex? It follows that when they start to eat like Americans they start to look like Americans too. I lose weight every time I visit China, as much as 10 pounds on some trips. I eat native Chinese food. It's 85% protein and vegetables with some rice and noodles. I keep thinking I should eat like this back home. It might help.

Technorati Tags: ,,,