Four veteran diabetologists and endocrinologists of the country were conferred upon ‘Lifetime Achievement Awards’ at an award distribution ceremony on Sunday.
The award recipients have spent their life for the prevention, management and treatment of diabetes as well as other endocrinal disorders in Pakistan. In addition to lifetime achievement awards, ‘Star Awards’ were also given to eight other leading diabetologists and endocrinologists from various public and private health institutions for their services in controlling diabetes and introducing new techniques and treatments to deal with various complications of endocrine diseases.
Organised in connection with World Diabetes Day 2020, the award distribution ceremony, titled ‘Legends in Diabetes’, was arranged by a pharmaceutical firm at a hotel in Karachi. The recipients of lifetime achievement awards were Prof Dr Naeemul Haque, who is considered as ‘father of diabetes treatment and management’ in Pakistan, Prof Dr Ejaz Vohra, Prof Emerita Tasnim Ahsan and Prof Dr Najmul Islam.
On the other hand, experts who were received ‘Start Awards’ were Prof Dr Zaman Shaikh, Prof Dr Yaqoob Ahmedani, Dr Zahid Miyan, Dr Asma Ahmed, Prof Dr Karim Kammeruddin, Dr Zaki Alvi, Dr Yousuf Kamal and Dr Saif-ul-Haq.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof Naeemul Haque said it was the right time to prevent the younger generation, especially children, from becoming obese and developing diabetes early in their lives, saying nowadays children only considered video games as games and sports, which was a serious concern for the policymakers.
“Video games and junk food, such as pizza and burger, are destroying our nation. In the words of late Prof Abdus Samad Shera, they are weapons of mass destruction, which are destroying ours and various other nations of the world,” said Prof Haque. “We need to simplify our lives and encourage our children to play physical games to become a physically and mentally healthy nation.”
Asking people to “walk away from diabetes”, he said that spending at least 45 to one hour on physical activities must be part of everybody’s daily routine and added that people should give some time for their health and well-being instead of taking pills and medicines for their entire lives.
Prof Emerita Dr Tasnim Ahsan said contrary to our beliefs, eating was not entertainment. She advised people to eat less and spend more time on healthy physical activities, such as walking, jogging, sporting and doing yoga.
“We also need to reduce or get rid of fast food and carbonated beverages. We must promote the drinking of plain water and our traditional beverages without salt and sugar. There should be family events and contests on physical activities instead of gatherings which are just meant to eat and feed others with unhealthy food,” she added.