So Diwali celebrations are well underway and at the risk of not being asked to go to leave the country, we would like to mention that pollution is not the sole concern for India this Diwali. The other health issue which is not making headlines and has nothing to do with climate change is diabetes.

Representational image | Source: Reuters

Yes, diabetes being a serious health risk to India should not come as a surprise for a country which is widely known to be the largest consumer of sugar in the world and comes second in terms of most diabetics. In a nation which has 65 million people suffering from diabetes, the fact that seven out of ten diabetics in urban areas do not control their diet is bad news.

But no one is suggesting that Diwali is the reason for this negligence in terms of health, diet is ignored even on other days, but it gets a lot worse on Diwali. Be it a Gulab Jamun fried and soaked in sugar syrup, or a laddoo loaded with calories, indulgence in festivities can prove a lot more damaging for diabetics.

Representational image | Source: Reuters

In a survey conducted by IPSOS India on 4,148 people in eight cities, on type-2 diabetes patients in the age group of 36 to 65 years, found that 62% diabetics are obese and 65% have uncontrolled sugar levels.

Here’s how major cities in India performed in the survey, and as in pollution, Delhi tops this list as well.


77% diabetics with high blood sugar, 58% with obesity.


56% with high sugar levels, 59% with obesity.

Representational image | Source: Reuters


75% with high sugar levels, 60% with obesity.


61% with high sugar levels, 61% with obesity.

Representational image | Source: Reuters


73% with high sugar levels, 61% with obesity.


87% with high sugar levels, 63% with obesity.


55% with high sugar levels, 66% with obesity.

Representational image | Source: Reuters


47 percent with high sugar levels, 69% with obesity.

Representational image | Source: Reuters

As for celebrations, “almost 30% of surveyed respondents claimed to go easy on their diet during festive occasions,” which is not a minor issue since festivals in India are far from the “rare occasions in a year” affair like they are in the rest of the world.

Representational image | Source: Reuters

Apart from the sugar intake which increases dramatically during Diwali and other festivals, the regular diet of Indians which is high on carbs is also being seen as a factor for worsening health of a high percentage of diabetics.

With inputs from PTI