Journal of Public Health

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 581–590 | Cite as

A survey to validate the traditional Siddha perception of diabetes mellitus

  • Amulya Vijay
  • Priyadharshan RanganathanEmail author
  • Balachandar Vellingiri
Original Article



To investigate the influence of gender, marital status, specific food, and lifestyle habits that could possibly be the causative factor according to ancient medical texts. Exploring the alternative medicinal knowledge about diabetes mellitus (DM) and validating its authenticity by carrying out a modern-day study with a scientific perception in identifying the specific food and lifestyle causing DM.

Subjects and methods

Our study was conducted during the period 2015 to 2017 in Tamil Nadu and Kerala States, South India. Data was collected from 1206 individuals aged between 18 and 89 years through a predesigned questionnaire which included seven novel questions acquired from the traditional Indian texts of Siddha medicine.


A questionnaire-based study conducted using which a total of 1206 subjects (men: 55.4%; women: 44.6%) were evaluated with a mean age of 42.88 ± 13.212 years. A higher number of males were affected than females. It is also evident that married people get more affected by Type 2 ,whereas unmarried subjects were found to be more affected by Type 1. There is a significant effect of gender and marital status, and also the influence of specific food and lifestyle habits listed is evident.


The antiquity of early descriptions of diabetes underscores the importance of the observation and recording of medical conditions as humans evolve; more similar studies should be conducted to validate the data in ancient medicinal texts and to prove their authenticity in the modern scientific era.


Diabetes mellitus (DM) Traditional medicine Health survey Data collection 



We would like to thank the authorities of Bharathiar University, Coimbatore for providing infrastructure facilities for this research work. We are grateful to the authors of the articles included in the reference, many of whom kindly provided us with additional information regarding their studies. We also express our gratitude to Bioline Diagnostics and Labs, Coimbatore for their support in completion of the research work. Last but not least, we thank the patients and their families for their dedicated participation in completion of the work. This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethical approval

All adopted procedures and methodology used were in agreement with the ethical standards for research at the university.

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


  1. Abu-Aisha H, Elhassan EA, Khamis AH, Abu-Elmaali A (2008) Hypertension and obesity in police forces households in Khartoum, Sudan: a pilot report-part of the “police forces hypertension, diabetes, renal insufficiency, and thyroid derangements (HyDRIT) study”, Sudan. Sudanese J Public Health 3:17–25Google Scholar
  2. Anjana RM, Pradeepa R, Deepa M, Datta M, Sudha V, Unnikrishnan R, Bhansali A, Joshi SR, Joshi PP, Yajnik CS, Dhandhania VK (2011) Prevalence of diabetes and prediabetes (impaired fasting glucose and/or impaired glucose tolerance) in urban and rural India: phase I results of the Indian Council of Medical Research–INdiaDIABetes (ICMR–INDIAB) study. Diabetologia 54:3022–3027CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Asha PB, Murthy BN, Chellamariappan M, Gupte MD, Krishnaswami CV (2001) Prevalence of known diabetes in Chennai City. J Assoc Physicians India 49:974–981Google Scholar
  4. Azimi-Nezhad M, Ghayour-Mobarhan MP, Parizadeh MR, Safarian M, Esmaeili H, Parizadeh SM, Khodaee G, Hosseini J, Abasalti Z, Hassankhani B, Ferns G (2008) Prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus in Iran and its relationship with gender, urbanisation, education, marital status and occupation. Singap Med J 49:571Google Scholar
  5. Baliunas DO, Taylor BJ, Irving H, Roerecke M, Patra J, Mohapatra S, Rehm J (2009) Alcohol as a risk factor for type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Diabetes Care 32:2123–2132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Barik A, Mazumdar S, Chowdhury A, Rai RK (2016) Physiological and behavioral risk factors of type 2 diabetes mellitus in rural India. BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care 4:e000255CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bosi PL, Carvalho AM, Contrera D, Casale G, Pereira MA, Gronner MF, Diogo TM, Torquarto MT, Oishi J, Leal AM (2009) Prevalence of diabetes and impaired glucose tolerance in the urban population of 30 to 79 years of the city of São Carlos, São Paulo. Arq Bras Endocrinol Metabol 53:726–732CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. dos Santos PF, dos Santos PR, Ferrari GS, Fonseca GA, Ferrari CK (2014) Knowledge of diabetes mellitus: does gender make a difference? Osong Public Health Res Perspect 5:199–203CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dray-Spira R, Gary TL, Brancati FL (2008) Socioeconomic position and cardiovascular disease in adults with and without diabetes: United States trends, 1997–2005. J Gen Intern Med 23:1634CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Enang OE, Otu AA, Essien OE, Okpara H, Fasanmade OA, Ohwovoriole AE, Searle J (2014) Prevalence of dysglycemia in Calabar: a cross-sectional observational study among residents of Calabar, Nigeria. BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care 2:e000032CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Goswami AK, Gupta SK, Kalaivani M, Nongkynrih B, Pandav CS (2016) Burden of hypertension and diabetes among urban population aged≥ 60 years in South Delhi: a community based study. J Clin Diagn Res 10:LC01Google Scholar
  12. Hilawe EH, Yatsuya H, Kawaguchi L, Aoyama A (2013) Differences by sex in the prevalence of diabetes mellitus, impaired fasting glycaemia and impaired glucose tolerance in sub-Saharan Africa: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Bull World Health Organ 91:671–82DCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Iyer SR, Iyer RR, Upasani SV, Baitule MN (2001) Diabetes mellitus in Dombivli—an urban population study. J Assoc Physicians India 49:713–716Google Scholar
  14. Jee SH, Foong AW, Hur NW, Samet JM (2010) Smoking and risk for diabetes incidence and mortality in Korean men and women. Diabetes Care 33:2567–2572CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kamaura M, Fujii H, Mizushima S, Tochikubo O (2011) Weight gain and risk of impaired fasting glucose after smoking cessation. J Epidemiol 21:431–439CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lakhtakia R (2013) The history of diabetes mellitus. Sultan Qaboos Univ Med J 13:368CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lidfeldt J, Li TY, Hu FB, Manson JE, Kawachi I (2007) A prospective study of childhood and adult socioeconomic status and incidence of type 2 diabetes in women. Am J Epidemiol 165:882–889CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Meshram II, Rao MV, Rao VS, Laxmaiah A, Polasa K (2016) Regional variation in the prevalence of overweight/obesity, hypertension and diabetes and their correlates among the adult rural population in India. Br J Nutr 115:1265–1272CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Mohan V, Shanthirani S, Deepa R, Premalatha G, Sastry NG, Saroja R (2001) Intra urban differences in the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome in southern India—the Chennai Urban Population Study (CUPS no. 4). Diabet Med 18:280–287CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Olatunbosun ST, Ojo PO, Fineberg NS, Bella AF (1998) Prevalence of diabetes mellitus and impaired glucose tolerance in a group of urban adults in Nigeria. J Natl Med Assoc 90:293Google Scholar
  21. Pandey MM, Rastogi S, Rawat AK (2013) Indian traditional ayurvedic system of medicine and nutritional supplementation. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2013:376327Google Scholar
  22. Piet JH. (1952) A logical presentation of the Śaiva Siddhānta Philosophy. Doctoral dissertation, Christian Literature Society for India (United Society for Christian Literature)Google Scholar
  23. Rahmanian K, Shojaei M, Jahromi AS (2013) Relation of type 2 diabetes mellitus with gender, education, and marital status in an Iranian urban population. Rep Biochem Mol Biol 1:64Google Scholar
  24. Ramachandran A (2005) Epidemiology of diabetes in India—three decades of research. J Assoc Physicians India 53:34–38Google Scholar
  25. Ramachandran A, Jali MV, Mohan V, Snehalatha C, Viswanathan M (1988) High prevalence of diabetes in an urban population in South India. Bmj 3:587–590CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Ramachandran A, Snehalatha C, Latha E, Vijay V, Viswanathan M (1997) Rising prevalence of NIDDM in an urban population in India. Diabetologia 40:232–237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Ramachandran A, Snehalatha C, Kapur A, Vijay V, Mohan V, Das AK, Rao PV, Yajnik CS, Kumar KP, Nair JD (2001) Diabetes Epidemiology Study Group in India (DESI). High prevalence of diabetes and impaired glucose tolerance in India: National Urban Diabetes Survey. Diabetologia 44:1094–1101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Rashedi V, Asadi-Lari M, Delbari A, Fadayevatan R, Borhaninejad V, Foroughan M (2017) Prevalence of diabetes type 2 in older adults: findings from a large population-based survey in Tehran, Iran (urban HEART-2). Diabetes Metab Syndr Clin Res Rev 11:S347–S350CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Robbins JM, Vaccarino V, Zhang H, Kasl SV (2001) Socioeconomic status and type 2 diabetes in African American and non-Hispanic white women and men: evidence from the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Am J Public Health 91:76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Sadikot SM, Nigam A, Das S, Bajaj S, Zargar AH, Prasannakumar KM, Sosale A, Munichoodappa C, Seshiah V, Singh SK, Jamal A (2004) The burden of diabetes and impaired fasting glucose in India using the ADA 1997 criteria: prevalence of diabetes in India study (PODIS). Diabetes Res Clin Pract 66:293–300CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Shukla S, Saraf S (2011) Fundamental aspect and basic concept of siddha medicines. Sys Rev Pharm 2(1):48CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Stephen ES (2005) Complementary and alternative medicine. In: Dennis LK, Eugene B, Anthony SF, Stephen LH, Llarry JL (eds) Harrison’s principles of internal medicine, 16th edn. McGraw–Hill Medical, New York, p 67Google Scholar
  33. Subhose V, Srinivas P, Narayana A (2005) Basic principles of pharmaceutical science in Ayurvĕda. Bull Indian Inst Hist Med Hyderabad 35(2):83–92Google Scholar
  34. Tesfaye T, Shikur B, Shimels T, Firdu N (2016) Prevalence and factors associated with diabetes mellitus and impaired fasting glucose level among members of federal police commission residing in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. BMC Endocr Disord 16:68CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Tharkar S, Devarajan A, Barman H, Mahesh U, Viswanathan V (2015) How far has translation of research been implemented into clinical practice in India? Are the recommended guidelines adhered to? Int J Diabetes Mellit 3:25–30CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Thomas NJ, Jones SE, Weedon MN, Shields BM, Oram RA, Hattersley AT (2017) Frequency and phenotype of type 1 diabetes in the first six decades of life: a cross-sectional, genetically stratified survival analysis from UK Biobank. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 6(2):122–129CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Tripathy JP, Thakur JS, Jeet G, Chawla S, Jain S, Pal A, Prasad R, Saran R (2017) Prevalence and risk factors of diabetes in a large community-based study in North India: results from a STEPS survey in Punjab, India. Diabetol Metab Syndr 9:8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Upadhyay RP, Misra P, Chellaiyan VG, Das TK, Adhikary M, Chinnakali P, Yadav K, Sinha S (2013) Burden of diabetes mellitus and prediabetes in tribal population of India: a systematic review. Diabetes Res Clin Pract 102:1–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Wang Y, Ji J, Liu YJ, Deng X, He QQ (2013) Passive smoking and risk of type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. PLoS One 8:e69915CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Wells JC, Pomeroy E, Walimbe SR, Popkin BM, Yajnik CS (2016) The elevated susceptibility to diabetes in India: an evolutionary perspective. Front Public Health 4:145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Willi C, Bodenmann P, Ghali WA, Faris PD, Cornuz J (2007) Active smoking and the risk of type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Jama 298:2654–2664CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. World Health Organization (2008) Waist circumference and waist–hip ratio: report of a WHO expert consultation. WHO, Geneva, pp 8–11Google Scholar
  43. Zargar AH, Khan AK, Masoodi SR, Laway BA, Wani AI, Bashir MI, Dar FA (2000) Prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus and impaired glucose tolerance in the Kashmir Valley of the Indian subcontinent. Diabetes Res Clin Pract 47:135–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Human Genetics and Molecular BiologyBharathiar UniversityCoimbatoreIndia
  2. 2.Human Molecular Cytogenetics and Stem Cell Laboratory, Department of Human Genetics and Molecular BiologyBharathiar UniversityCoimbatoreIndia

Personalised recommendations