Sugar Matters
April 30, 2010
You can go home again

Last week I had the immense pleasure of meeting many of you on my trip home. Wow, I cannot tell you the array of thoughts and emotions I felt during those few days. First and foremost I would like to thank all of you for coming out to our clinic sites, for tuning in to our radio panel discussion, and for receiving us with open arms and willing minds.{{more}} I am so grateful to the Hopkins team for inviting me along on their mission trip, so that we can all work towards that common goal of improved health in our diabetic population in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

You asked many questions during the visits (all very relevant and insightful). In addition to those answers I gave during our trip, I will plan on addressing all of them again in the coming weeks through our Sugar Matters column-you gave me enough material to cover for the rest of the year! This week I would like to share a few observations I made during the trip.

The Good:

You asked us questions!!! Yeah!!!! Some of you needed a bit of encouragement, but you all asked important questions, and I do hope you received complete answers from all of us.

Your feet overall look really good. I was totally surprised because believe me, I see TONS of REALLY bad-looking feet in my clinic here in the US. But despite the ideas about everyone having “yard foot”, we found most people actually had very-well cared for feet, aside from some toenails that were thick or slightly too long.

Some of you are checking blood sugars AT HOME. That made me SO happy, I cannot even express it to you. Self-checking of blood sugars is one of the absolute cornerstones of good diabetic care, especially for those taking insulin. It is not readily available to everyone because the machine and strips are not cheap, but some of you did have a machine AND regularly checked your fingerstick at home. I salute you!!!

The Bad:


We talked about it during the visits, I mentioned it in prior articles, but I will say it again: please wear closed shoes or covered sandals, and NOT gunslingers or skimpy shoes. You will pay the price at some point, and it may cost you a foot or leg.

You don’t ask your own doctors questions. I am quite aware that your district doctors are immensely busy. But your time with him/her is your time in the spotlight-ask your questions about your health and concerns.

And the Ugly:

Some of you are clearly not taking your medications, at least not the way our doctor asked you to. The only way the medications will work IS IF YOU TAKE THEM!!!

Many of you are still making poor food choices. I know the white penny bread tastes good, but that plus some cocoa tea in the morning is just begging for a high blood sugar and all the damage it brings. I will review again dietary recommendations for diabetics, but in the meantime remember: avoid or reduce the amount of “whites” (white bread, rice, potatoes etc), and mix your foods with some proteins instead of having a heavy starch-only meal. Not to mention the amounts of food being eaten-8 mangoes in addition to lunch??? You know better than that!

Okay, next week we start anew addressing some of these concerns and your questions. Thanks for the questions, the hugs and all the love. I miss home.

Stay safe and healthy, Vincies!

Anita Ramsetty, MD
Medical Director Endocrine Care Group
Tel: 843-798-4227