‘HYPOGLYCAEMIA’ : THE Struggles Of The Nigerian Student.
By Idongesit Imuk
“Great Nigerian students !!!” “great!!” “Greatest gbasa!!” “gbasa!”, “Greatest kposa!!” “kposa!”
The students chant with vigour and an underlying spirit of patriotism yet with hunger pangs gnawing at their stomachs.
The Nigerian student; a student with an undetachable attachment to books yet involved in a problem, paying his daily dues to the god of the stomach. Like Remus Lupin, dreading the night of the full moon. The Nigerian student somehow, though not always, dreads the action of the hormone insulin, the age-long antagonist of high blood glucose, the human currency of energy.
Normally insulin a protein hormone drives glucose from blood into the body tissues to be used up, and when its in excess it stores up. It normally tries to bring about normal blood glucose level, though transiently reduces it below normal.
Examination tension coupled with the geometric increase in the amount of materials churned out for photocopy in Nigerian universities, the unstable economy of the country plus the ups and downs of this ‘aluta’ struggle. The Nigerian student inevitably faces one major problem, Hypoglycaemia. Could it be hyperactivity of the beta cells of the islets of Langerhans? Or could it be the occasional competitions amongst the endocrine bosses?
The Aluta songs, chanted for consolation. Yawns and gnaws, terror of failure, of disappointing parents who hope and look forward to better days for their children. Nights classes, study groups, hours of lectures to sit through. What about comprehension of complex pathways and nerve plexuses, concepts and laws, discreet structures to place and the brain that gupples up sugar mercilessly?
The Nigerian student, resilient to ‘leggedis-benzing’ (trekking) dehydration from trekking under the scorching sun, discomfort from been sandwiched between bodies in lecture halls, amphitheatres and pavilions, becomes weakened in the face of hunger. Storms do stay after a while, but insulin storms do not except of course, when dues have been properly paid. The average Nigerian student; seemingly carefree, minding too little, oblivious of the many needs staring him in the face, gets awakened to consciousness everyday by this one condition – HUNGER or like the medics would say, HYPOGLYCAEMIA.
HYPOGLYCAEMIA: A deficiency of glucose in the bloodstream causing general body weakness. Hypoglycaemia occurs due to a drop in the level of blood glucose. Glucose provides energy in the body.