Diabetes, hypertension on the rise in Dar es Salaam, study finds

Sign of diabetes

Nearly sixteen in twenty Dar es Salaam teenagers and elderly are likely to be on the verge of developing diabetes and high blood pressure or could already diabetic or have hypertension.

According to a new study by Eternal International Tanzania co. Ltd, a Health and Counselling Centre, designed to provide a comprehensive range of professional and confidential health services “the figures are worrying.”

Dr Feruzi Abdulaziz, Eternal Country Assistant Manager told Afrika Reporter the problem is worsening and “it’s expensive to treat.”

“This calls for bold actions to reduce obesity and overweight rates which have in recent years not changed among the group,” he said.

He noted the prevalence rate of the diseases has been augmented by inactive lifestyles and high sugar consumption but also indicated genetics play a role.

Abdulaziz went on to say that the centre has been promoting natural nutrition treatment although it remains expensive to the patients.

He said they were planning the establishment of a health centre in the city to help the public access nutritional treatment services. Licensing and registration is underway, he revealed.

Health and Social Welfare Deputy Minister Steven Kebwe said diabetes and high blood pressure is at a critical stage across the nation.

He cited the country’s Demographic Health Survey of 2010 that indicated a 1% and 9% national average prevalence rate for diabetes and hypertension respectively.

“I don’t doubt the new figures released in Dar es Salaam,” he said adding “We have a big problem with obesity, overweight, diet and lifestyle which both push for higher risks to contract serious diseases among citizens.”

He however said the government has directed all councils across the country to hire nutritionists to help tackle the problem.