I am writing with regard to the report “Ensan, Sanofi join hands to educate diabetic orphans” (June 7). Knowing firsthand how these orphans live, I am not at all surprised that many of them have or are getting diabetes. Their caretakers add sugar to foods such as yogurt, milk and cheese.
Perhaps it is to get them to eat more, but obviously these caretakers do not realize that sugar actually dulls the appetite, and sugar is one of the worst foods for growing bodies. It is actually empty calories, lacking nutritional value. Besides the dental cavities it causes, sugar also increases the tendency of children to hyperactivity and restlessness, and may also contribute to attention deficiency learning disabilities, affecting learning in school.
If it is considered imperative to educate diabetic orphans, then caretakers should also be educated, so that they provide proper nutrition, instead of improper foods. These improper foods include items such as instant noodles, which contain monosodium glutamate, a chemical that companies use to enhance flavor.
This chemical is implicated in many illnesses from migraine headaches to illnesses that damage the central nervous system (such as multiple sclerosis) and cancer.
Basirah Al-Saraha, Jeddah