Complications of Diabetes

  • Eye damage that can result in complete blindness
  • Nerves damage, resulting in neuropathy (loss of sensation or pain especially in the arms or legs)
  • Amputations
  • Kidney damage
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Oral and skin complications, such as infections
  • Erectile dysfunction (impotence)
  • Hypertension
  • High cholesterol (Dyslipidaemia)

Complications of Hypertension

  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Heart failure
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol (dyslipidaemia)
  • Eye damage
  • Kidney damage
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Aneurysms

Complications of High Cholesterol (Dyslipidaemia)

  • Heart attack
  • Heart failure
  • Stroke
  • Angina
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Kidney damage
  • Aneurysms


Risk Factors 

Risk factors of Diabetes, Hypertension and High cholesterol

  • Family history
  • Age, risk increases as you grow older
  • Having any of the conditions can lead to the having another
  • Sedentary life style or physical inactivity
  • Poor diet
  • Obesity
  • Using tobacco
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Race, being black, Hispanic, American Indian or Asian-American (peculiar to diabetes and hypertension)
  • Gestational diabetes, if you developed high blood glucose during your pregnancy (risk factor for only diabetes)
  • Menopause in women (risk factor for only high cholesterol)


Tips to help you stop smoking

  • First of all, you have to get ready, get motivated to quit smoking, you can do this by listing all the reasons why you must quit smoking.
  •  If you have tried before and didn’t succeed, don’t be discouraged. Most people who quit smoking don’t succeed on the first try.
  • Think back at your failed attempts and learn from it. Note what worked and identify what made you fail, to better prepare you for your next attempt.
  • Try to identify your trigger for smoking. Whenever you pick up a stick, ask yourself, these questions:
  • What was I doing before I picked it up
  • How was I feeling?
  • Who was around me or where was I?

Do this consistently for several days. Then look for patterns, who would notice that a particular pattern is repeating itself, this is your trigger.

  • Now, that you know your trigger, whenever it comes up, find another activity to replace smoking. An activity that can give a feeling similar to that which you get when you smoke.
  • You might need to try different activities, e.g. take a walk, chat with a friend, chew gum and so on. Be persistent, you would eventually find a something to replace smoking.
  • Remove cigarettes, ashtrays and lighters from your home, office and car.
  • Get support, either from a trusted friend, a family member, giving yourself a target quit date.
  • You might need medications to help you make the process easier. Nicotine gums, skin patches and lozenges are the most popular forms of medication used and are readily available in pharmacies. Speak to your health care provider on your options and how to go about using them.


Body Mass Index (BMI)

It is used to determine if your weight is ideal or not. BMI shows the relationship between your weight and height and it is calculated thus:    


Or you could use this calculator

Your result would determine if your weight is ideal or not as shown below



Waist Circumference

It is important that you check your waist circumference, to ensure you are not carrying excess fat around your middle. Having excess weight around your waist is an indicator of the level of internal fat deposits which coat the heart, kidneys, liver digestive organs and pancreas. This can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Ideal waist circumference for men is less than 94cm (about 37 inches) while that for women, is less than 80cm (about 31.5 inches).

How to measure your waist

  • Find the top of your hip bone and the bottom of your ribs.
  • Breathe out normally.
  • Place the tape measure midway between theses point and wrap it around your waist.
  • Check your measurement.
  • Do not “suck in” your stomach and don’t hold your breath while measuring, despite how tempting it might be!



This is a situation where by your blood glucose is too low, that is, less than 70mg/dL or 3.88mmol/L. Hypoglyaemia can be harmful, so it important to know you know when it’s occurring and treat it. Symptoms are different in people, so try to know yours. If you feel the symptoms check your blood glucose if possible, if not treat hypoglycaemia anyways. The symptoms can include:

Symptoms of Hypoglycaemia

Symptoms of Hypoglycaemia


  1. Take one tablespoon of sugar or glucose, or half a bottle of a 50cl Coke.
  2. Check your blood glucose after 15 minutes
  3. If it’s still <60mg/dL, repeat what you took, and check again after 15 minutes
  4. Once your glucose level is normal, eat a small snack (like a slice of bread or an apple or orange) if your next meal is more than one or two hours away.