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Education key to curbing diabetes epidemic
Victoria’s alarming rate of type two diabetes could be lowered through a greater emphasis on diabetes education says AMA Victoria.
AMA Victoria President Dr Stephen Parnis said that increased awareness of the triggers and symptoms of type two diabetes will help to ensure less people develop the illness.
“Most people don’t have symptoms when they develop type 2 diabetes, so it is a good idea to get regular check ups with your GP, particularly if you’re a member of an at risk group” said Dr Parnis.
“Type two diabetes can be caused by environmental factors such as a lack of exercise and an unhealthy diet”.
“One in four Victorians is obese and one in 20 already has diabetes. Diabetes is the fastest growing chronic condition in Australia”.
“Education about diet and exercise can help people avoid this very serious disease. Unlike many diseases that doctors treat - type 2 diabetes can often be prevented”.
Almost two per cent of all health expenditure is spent treating diabetes. AMA Victoria believes that governments at all levels can do more to prevent diabetes and would like to see an emphasis on public education.
“Individuals must make smarter choices about their diets and work harder to get regular exercise. Simple changes to your eating habits and physical activity level can significantly reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes” said Dr Parnis
“Untreated diabetes can result in very serious complications such as kidney and nerve
damage, so seeking help early to manage the condition is important”.
Some of the key indicators of diabetes are
- Significant weight loss
- Tiredness and lack of energy
- Excessive thirst
- Blurred vision
- Increased risk of infections
- Frequent urination.
Those at high risk of diabetes, or who need advice on exercise and nutrition, should contact their general practitioner – they’re well-placed to talk through lifestyle choices, as well as
test, treat and refer when necessary.
Diabetes awareness week runs from 8 – 14 July.
For more information please contact Struan Robertson on 0437 450 506