The number of diabetics increases, nourishing recommendations do not help. Experts are looking for a patent remedy. Whether a sugar tax will help is disputed. But there are also other ideas.
At the bakery, it's cupcakes, Danish pastries, and cakes. In the supermarket, rows of shelves full of chocolate bars and bags of chips. Temptations lurk around every corner. And then there are many convenience foods that contain more sugar than meets the eye. The substance that makes many people sick is freely available everywhere.
"In the past, people chased the food. Today, food is chasing people," says Silvia Schonfuss, a nutritionist at the diabetes outpatient clinic of Berlin's Charite hospital. Among other things, it educates patients on ies related to food. Every chair in the waiting room is occupied. Yet it's a comparatively quiet day, the staff are us.
The work is not likely to run out here also in the future. On the contrary: In the future the number of diabetes patients will still rise. According to estimates by the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of currently 350 million diabetics worldwide will double in the next 20 years. The numbers will also rise in Germany.
According to the German Diabetes Association (DDG), 300 people are diagnosed with diabetes in Germany every year.000 people suffer from insulin resistance. However, experts emphasize that the number of unreported cases is high. According to current DDG estimates, up to two million people are still unaware of their disease.
Could sugar tax help?
The spread of the sedentary but high-calorie Western lifestyle is considered to be one of the reasons why more and more children are overweight and obese even in developing and emerging countries. Overweight children with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes are also a problem in Germany, says physician Thomas Bobbert, who heads the Charite's endocrinology day clinic.
Diabetes – Type 1 or Type 2?
The number of diabetics is increasing – also in Germany. Doctors and sufferers often only become aware of the problem when the diabetes is already advanced. Doctors distinguish between two forms of the disease.
"The food industry bears a fair share of the blame for the global rise in type 2 diabetes," says consumer advocate Oliver Huizinga of Foodwatch. There must be an end to child-friendly advertising for junk food, sweets and soft drinks. "90 percent of foods marketed to children with cartoons and toy additions are too sweet, too fatty, too salty."
Also the policy carries responsibility as with cigarettes, said DDG vice president Dirk Mueller Wieland. He welcomes the introduction of a sugar tax for soft drink companies announced by the British government in mid-March – such models already exist in several other countries, including in the EU. High time for Germany to follow suit, says the DDG: "Healthy, low-energy food should be cheaper than unhealthy, high-energy food," says Muller-Wieland.
Bans won't help
But it's the purchasing decisions alone that make people diabetic? In the seminar room of the Berlin diabetes outpatient clinic, empty margarine boxes, cheese cartons and bottles for training courses are stacked on the shelf. What's good, what's bad? Nowadays this question no longer arises, Silvia Schonfuss emphasizes. "We forbid nothing. What is forbidden gains in appeal and is eaten in secret.She emphasizes: "The dose makes the poison.