Name: TK Manmadhan, age 74

Profession: Zoologist (Retd)

“l’ve been living with Type 2 diabetes for more than 35 years, and at age 74, I’m still going strong. I have not let diabetes take over my life, and this would not be possible without the support of my better half M Sathi whose role is diversified into my personal dietitian and caretaker after I was diagnosed with diabetes.

Living with diabetes: TK Manmadhan

I was a sturdy man – 6 feet tall and weighing 90 kgs in my thirties. All of a sudden, I started to lose weight, began feeling unusually tired, lethargic, excessive hunger, thirst – in fact, I had all the classic symptoms of diabetes. Sure enough, I was diagnosed to be Type 2 diabetic.

The initial days were hard to handle. I lost the sweetness in my life due to regular medication, and I had to make a big compromise on my food and take up regular exercise. It had really become a big point of concern. I soon learnt to manage the condition without too many issues.

However, in 2010 I met with a small accident where I injured my big toe. That’s when I was advised to start using insulin to heal the wound, and speed up recovery. I started using insulin regularly, and with self-monitoring devices, I found that it was manageable to a great extent.

My current medication includes – Insulin Human Mixtard, Glycomet GP1 1g, Telma 40, Atrofit and multivitamin supplements, which I order online.

A well-planned diet and regular medication goes in a long way in handling diabetes efficiently, so that patients can lead a normal lifestyle without any hindrance and comorbid conditions

My diet is also modified with plenty of fibre-rich foods. I am careful to maintain the intervals with timely snacks that include soups, buttermilk, salads, sprouts and fruits. My interest in gardening is also a great stress-buster, apart from keeping me physically active. I spend nearly spent 60 minutes daily which is good for my mind and body.

Manmadhans personal tips to manage diabetes:


  • Maintain proper meal timing with healthy snacks to prevent blood sugar spikes.
  • Go for fibre rich complex carbs, vegetables and fruit in your diet
  • Include moderate physical activity that interests you on a regular basis.
  • Self-monitoring blood sugar at home at regular intervals is a good habit.
  • Proper foot care with regular foot examination is a must to check for any unnoticed cuts or changes in the feet.
  • Follow your medication as prescribed with regular physician visit as advised.

Manmadhan’s advice: “In order to deal with diabetes, the right knowledge goes a long way in managing it effectively.”