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Don’t let diabetes debilitate you



In an interview with the Sunday Island, Vidya Jyothi Dr. Prasad Katulanda, Honorary Consultant Diabetologist and Senior Lecturer in Clinical Medicine from the University of Colombo, throws light on the urgency of managing diabetes during the pandemic and following safe health protocols. The complications of COVID-19 Virus in people with diabetes are more serious, warns the Consultant.

by Randima Attygalle

Diabetes is today a global epidemic affecting about 422 million people worldwide, World Health Organization (WHO) affirms. The majority of them live in low and middle income countries and 1.6 million deaths are directly attributed to diabetes each year. By 2030, diabetes is predicted to be the seventh leading cause of death by the WHO. Diabetes is today among the top ten causes of death with almost half of deaths occurring in people under the age of 60. One in six live births is also affected by hyperglycaemia in pregnancy. While the prevalence of diabetes has been steadily increasing over the past few decades, COVID-19 pandemic has claimed over one million lives worldwide so far. Over 50 million are infected with the virus. “Diabetes and COVID-19 are like a merge of two pandemics,” observes Vidya Jyothi Dr. Prasad Katulanda, Honorary Consultant Diabetologist and Senior Lecturer in Clinical Medicine from the University of Colombo, who goes on to warn that people with diabetes are more likely to experience severe complications of COVID-19.

“Scientific evidence from China, America and several more countries reflect that obese people, people with diabetes and other non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease are at a higher risk of developing severe COVID-induced complications. Higher proportion of people in these groups require ICU care including ventilators,” explains the Consultant. Several reasons are attributed to people with diabetes developing complications of the virus. Those with diabetes, he explains, have a risk for inflammation. This makes is harder to fight the virus and leads to a longer recovery period. The virus also thrives in an environment of elevated blood glucose. “COVID complications occur as a result of an exaggerated response of the immune system- a condition known to be ‘cytokine storm’ where a lot of molecules of the immune system get liberated in large amounts. This amount is much more than a response to fight the infection. Since diabetics are at the risk of increased inflammation, this response gets further exaggerated resulting in higher COVID complications,” explains the Diabetologist calling for strict adherence to safety protocols.People with diabetes are also more prone to clotting of blood. “Post-mortems of COVID-infected patients have revealed blood clots in their lungs resulting in severe lung damage, hence those with diabetes need to be extra careful in taking precautions such as proper use of face masks, regular hand washing, maintaining social distancing and restricting social gatherings and travel,” says Dr. Katulanda.Whilst the management of diabetes during the pandemic is crucial, others in the household should also be equally cautious not to ‘bring the infection home,’ he remarks. “If you have any family member with diabetes, extra measures need to be taken when you return from your work place etc. If any family member is suspected of COVID, it is imperative to isolate him/her without any direct contact with the others.” The safety measures apply to the workplace as well where those with diabetes need to maintain social distancing, hand hygiene etc.Sri Lanka Non Communicable Disease Survey conducted by the Diabetes Research Unit of the Colombo University’s Medical Faculty reveals that in the Colombo city limits alone about 25% or more adults have diabetes. This reflects that one in three adults in Colombo has diabetes and the rate has gone up from 18% in 2016 to 25% now. Moreover, another 30 to 40% have pre-diabetes and only about 30% has perfectly normal blood sugar levels. Sri Lanka Young Diabetes Study too reflects that about 1% of diabetes is due to maternally inherited diabetes and deafness (MIDD). “Sri Lanka being an alarming ‘hot spot’ for Type 2 Diabetes, (adult onset diabetes) even those who are at the risk of diabetes (pre-diabetes) should watch out for their dietary patterns during the pandemic with lockdowns and quarantine curfew becoming a way of life,” warns Dr. Katulanda.

With the pandemic, come challenges to healthy eating. With limited food choices, especially during lockdown/curfew situations, more people are prone to consume starch and less fibre-rich foods. “We have seen some pre-diabetes people converting to diabetics due to this. Many have become obese and fatty liver conditions have got worse- all precursors to diabetes,” points out Katulanda urging people to eat healthy under the circumstances.

A diet of low glycemic index is encouraged with more unrefined carbs (whole grains, low GI rice, less oil and low sugar. Foods with trans-fat such as margarine, other fat spreads, oily meats (bacon, pork, sausages) should also be kept at bay. Adding more green vegetables and local green fruits such as nelli, guava and ambarella to the diet is also helpful. “Those who are likely to take more sugary foods should be conscious of what is called ‘portion exchange’ where they need to compromise on other starchy foods such as white bread, string hoppers etc.”

With regular physical activities such as walking and going to the gym becoming restricted during the pandemic, keeping one’s self fit at home is essential. “While those with a machine such as the treadmill could do a workout, others could do stretching exercises and yoga. Even the elderly with IT skills could get plenty of guidance on line to the best exercises to keep them fit during these trying times,” says the physician. Home gardening is another healthy option which not only keeps one fit but also helps bring fresh garden produce to the table.

Being couch potatoes at home addicted to devices, particularly the phone is means of inviting diabetes upon one’s self, he warns. “With work-from-home arrangements becoming a way of life, people tend to sit before a computer or a phone for longer periods and this makes them even more sedentary.” Taking regular breaks in between working hours to stretch or walk a bit, climb some stairs and limiting the screen time and chat groups could make a person more healthy.



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The Boss Up Story



Boss Up isn’t merely a brand name. It’s a manifestation of resilience and inner power in the form of a branding and social media marketing agency. Hafsa Killru, the Founder of Boss Up has a personal story and determination to ‘boss up’ that propelled her to launch her own venture to empower entrepreneurship, especially among small businesses.


The environment one grows up in has a remarkable effect on a young child’s mind. Watching two strong women in the family redefine the role of feminine power, a young Hafsa grew up ambitious too. Although brimming with the desire to create a change, her childhood was fraught with challenges that plague many children today – bullying. She was subject to severe bullying since the tender age of 10 at her places of education, which affected both her mental and physical health.

“I never fit in anywhere. I was never welcome among the cliques. But I didn’t let it affect my confidence. Keeping my circle small helped me stay focused on my studies. I’d spend this time alone in school libraries, often reading encyclopedias,” says Hafsa. “The bullying worsened in my teenage years. I was lonely but it worked out in my favour because I was never, and still not, someone who worries about ‘what will others say’ — a key obstacle in many people’s lives. Not having many friends meant I was not under peer pressure. This allowed me to be my authentic self.”

Hafsa’s writing career began quite unexpectedly when she was 17. Not only is she a content writer but also a poet who writes evocatively about mental health, healing and empowerment. But this didn’t come by easily either.

During her higher studies, those she considered to be her friends tried to crush her growth mindset, which eventually took a toll on her. It was only when she managed to remove herself from such environments did she become more self-aware and regain her confidence, thanks to the solitude it brought into her life.Yet again, a new set of obstacles awaited her in her early 20s. In 2019, she was turned down by over 20 companies within three months alone, which led to deep frustration and self-doubt. Although she had freelancing opportunities, the lockdown only added to her troubles.

But that’s when something clicked into place – an idea so obvious, so big and so right for her that Hafsa knew it was what all these adversities were pushing her towards. She realised the lockdown was putting undue pressure on businesses and it needed a solution. Especially small businesses were struggling to go online and create a sustainable brand, and that too at an affordable rate. How could they compete with incumbent brands with massive budgets and breakthrough technologies? She sought to give them the edge they needed and thus, Boss Up was born in October 2020.

“Inviting change, taking charge of the situation and choosing to do something on my own has to be, although scary, the most liberating decision I have ever made,” admits Hafsa. “The lockdown wasn’t the time for businesses to go silent. They needed business and marketing solutions that would help them overcome the situation.”

In today’s contemporary business world, a business of any size will only be running a losing race if it hasn’t developed a strong social media presence or a clear brand strategy. Hence, Boss Up ensures equal opportunities are given to entrepreneurs from all walks of life.

One and a half years into the business, Boss up is now global with its wings spread across countries like the UK, Canada, Dubai, Qatar, the Maldives and Australia, and is backed by a strong team of young and passionate minds.

The Purpose

Boss Up’s primary goal is to uplift entrepreneurs. The brand is also a strong advocate for inner power, confidence and resilience — the three main driving forces of ambition. It intends to help people who hail from struggling backgrounds; the ones who are inundated with a lack of support, seek self-sufficiency and are hungry to design a unique identity for themselves.The brand also strives to treat everyone at work with compassion and empathy whilst leading with kindness as it is crucial to reform work cultures that are hazardous to oneself.

Reach out to HAfsa via Instagram @hafsa_killru @bossup_srilanka or email

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The Switch of Trend in Fashion After the Pandemic 2022



There has been an immense change in the Industry of Fashion after the pandemic struck us all hard. Currently, the trends of fashion have also taken a big turn towards affordable fashion trending styles and outfits. The Fashion boom has grown to become steadily slow for the seasonal styles and basic needs of clothing as well.

The current scenario of fashion life is always at a peak, and even after the Covid-19 pandemic, we have still seen slow growth in the need for fashion. There are of course certain aspects that have affected the industry and declined surplus. However, fashion and clothing have become a BASIC need for humans across the globe.

From shopping high-end couture to higher brand apparel, the trend has shifted to move on to sustainable clothing and organic clothing pieces. For example, we have become more aware of locally produced clothing brands and organic fabrics of our country. Made in India clothing and brands are emerging at a higher graph.Let’s take a look at the Current Change in Fashion Trends due to Pandemic 2022

Sustainable Outfits After the Pandemic

This is something most have been finding a basic need in clothing. Spending over and over again on the same kinds of clothing has and will reduce in the future. Buying clothing and fashion pieces that last for longer is the key to saving more than before. Buying pieces like basic Tees, Pants which may be styled over and over again is what the trend is shifting towards.

Budget Range of Fashion Brands are Accepted higher

Since the ban of Rowme and Shein-like brands and online websites in India, other national brands have started to make affordable fashion pieces for their customers. Styles and trends of fashion in the budget are what the people will be looking out for since the economic growth of people has dropped. Investing in fashion will never end until there will be a supply, the only difference is the budget range brands have a huge change of acceptance now since the pandemic.

Change of Styles worn to Work or Office Fashion after the Pandemic

Since the depression, people may have just stopped feeling happier may want to take the effort to dress like before. Styles of fashion in a simple and classy fashion will emerge largely than before. Choosing Plains or Solids overprints and pattern or neutrals over new trending colors and the print patterns is being seen for workwear fashion.

Change of Trends and Styles for Indian Festival Wear after the Pandemic

In the same way as the above point mentions, dressing special occasions will take a shift. Looking at the financial conditions currently, customers will be buying lesser for Festive wear than before. Styling the same pieces with a change of new additions of budget festive wear will be trending. Sarees and salwar suits in silks, choosing cotton, and linen kurta sets over the designer trends are to be seen this year during Indian festivals.

Choosing Budget Wedding Wear Over Designer Wedding Wear

When it comes to weddings, the cost goes to the highest for any customer. But the pandemic has changed how weddings will be taking place. The cost of weddings has declined drastically and shopping for Indian weddings has grown to choose mid-range wedding wear over high-end designer wear. Saving more during weddings, styles of lehengas, sarees, shalwar suits, or sherwanis for weddings that are in mid-range is a new trend.

From styling men’s kurta suits styles for the basic function of weddings to choosing classic or budget range sarees and suits for the bride’s ceremonies will take up a new fashion trend look. Making a choice of ONE heavy wear Lehenga and Sherwani may be what the soon-to-wed couples be looking for.Designer wear which can be restyled or reused and worn for other occasions and weddings is also a trend to grow rapidly. Saving much more for the bridal and groom’s outfit looks.

Shopping Online Increased for clothing after the Pandemic

The safer way to buy clothing has become a focus for all customers going towards online shopping. The percentage of online buyers has rapidly increased for clothes after the pandemic. From casual wear shopping online to fashion shopping for festivals and weddings, all have become much easier and more convenient for consumers.

Websites and businesses are working to grow even wider with Online Shopping. Connecting with customers personally for their shopping experiences to taking a new addition in budget clothing varieties for the customers is what’s taking place.

Online shopping has become a trend We have set an all-new trend for our customers It brings more trust and safety to customers. Shopping for wedding wear online only gets comfortable for all when sitting back home and shopping Fashion Shopping after the Pandemic via on-line shooping is what keeps all customers happier.

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Life style

Captivating streetwear for today’s fashionable girls



The latest street fashion brand Girls by Dillys under the umbrella of Dilly’s was launched recently introducing trending new pieces to help girls carry the distinct personality and style to be the fashionable girl of today.

Girl by Dilly’s is a creative street fashion brand that focuses on vibrant colors, textures, and prints to bring out the youthful exuberance of today’s girls. The brand has emphasized on contrasting color combinations. The ethos of this brand is creativity and having fun. Girl by Dilly’s is dedicated to the free-spirited girls who have their own super powers and a bold attitude. Girls are encouraged to mix and create unique styles to introduce their own identity in a creative and playful way.

This brand is the new lifestyle for confident girls who love to enjoy freedom, youth and individuality. The brand has different style combinations from casual to evening wear to make the overall look fashionable and completely their own. The brand tagline ‘All about a Girl’ is a reminder to every girl that she is unique and beautiful.

To ensure glam and comfort, all Girl by Dilly’s products are crafted using quality fabrics and technical know-how. The brand offers a wide range of stylish ready-to-wear pieces, from tops, skirts, pants, shorts, dresses, rompers, jump suits, crop tops, and t-shirts. The brand has introduced batik into the collection with a fabulous finishing touch to elevate its signature styles. The brand is also introducing a comfortable t-shirt collection with inspirational slogans and line art to share a positive message with society.

Dilani Wijeyesekera – Director of Girl by Dilly’s stated, “We became aware of a notable gap in today’s market for fashionable streetwear clothing for girls. Today’s new generation of girls have a different youthful energy about them. They are fun, bold, carefree and energetic and they want the whole world to see that. Girl by Dilly’s is perfect for such girls as it helps them find their own identity through our collection of vibrant colours and creative styles that they can mix and match to come up with eye-catching outfits. Every piece of Girl by Dilly’s has the look and feel of fun and vibrancy.”

With the launch, Girl by Dilly’s is providing an introductory offer to all loyalty customers where they can avail themselves to a 15% discount on all products until 7th August 2022, both on online and at the flagship store. A selection of special giveaways has also been lined up in the coming weeks for all social media followers.

For the latest Girl by Dilly’s updates and new releases, follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok using @dillyandcarlo. The latest Girl by Dilly’s collections are available at the Flagship Store on the website

Dilly’s was established in 1987 to cater to Colombo’s desire for high-end designer wear with a local twist. As the company grew, Dilly’s introduced its second brand to the market, this time to cater to menswear. Carlo was established in 2007 and exemplified stylish men’s clothing for all ages. The brand is housing its distinct designer ranges to cater to the entire wardrobe requirement of modern men and women.

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