The medical director of Hospiten Santo Domingo said that the country is facing a “public health challenge” due to factors such as poor diet, sedentary lifestyle, overweight, obesity and high alcohol consumption, which cause diseases such as hypertension and diabetes.
Dr. Milagros Alcántara valued as positive the announcement of President Luis Abinader Corona to continue the program that offers free medicines to hypertensive and diabetic patients, with which he complies with the agreement of adhesion of the country to the “Hearts” program of the World Health Organization (WHO).
He said that the President’s announcement has special relevance in light of the data provided by the National Institute of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Nutrition (INDEN), which indicate that 22.7% of the Dominican population suffers from diabetes (13.4%) and pre-diabetes (9.3%).
These numbers, he said, reflect the magnitude of the public health challenge facing the country, due to poor diet, sedentary lifestyles, overweight, obesity and alcohol consumption, which contribute to increasing this problem.
Alcántara stressed the importance of addressing these risk factors, pointing out that diabetes is characterized by high blood sugar levels, whose normal fasting values are 99 mg/dl; from 100 to 125 mg/dl already indicate pre-diabetes and those of 126 mg/dl and above are diabetic.
Other elements to consider -he said- are fried foods, rich in saturated and trans fats, high salt content, sweets, baked goods such as pastries and ice cream, drinks with added sugars, such as juices, sodas and energy drinks for sports, which can lead to different types of diabetes.
Dr. Luisa de la Rosa, cardiologist-ecocardiographer at Hospiten Santo Domingo explained that “eating disorders with high consumption of carbohydrates, fats, processed foods and increased stress levels are all factors that make the population more prone to suffer from cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure, obesity, high cholesterol levels and diabetes mellitus, among others”.
The Hospiten Group is an international healthcare network committed to providing the highest quality service, with more than 50 years’ experience, with 20 private medical-hospital centers in Spain, DR, Mexico, Jamaica and Panama, and more than 100 outpatient medical centers, under the Clinic Assist brand. Founded by Dr. Pedro Luis Cobiella, it annually attends more than two million patients from all over the world, and has a staff of more than 5,000 people.