Rural Northwest Health is joining forces with Diabetes Victoria for National Diabetes Week next week and calling on the community to learn more about the ‘invisible condition’ of diabetes.
RNH diabetes educator Leanne Huebner said diabetes was affecting more and more people every day.
“People with diabetes look like everybody else – they come in all shapes, sizes, ages, gender identities and ethnicities,” Mrs Huebner said.
“You cannot see if somebody has diabetes, nor can you tell which type of diabetes they have,” she said.
Every day, more than 80 people in Victoria develop diabetes and, of those, the majority have type 2 diabetes – which is often linked to lifestyle issues such as a poor diet and a lack of regular exercise. Just as concerning – one in every four Victorians over the age of 25 is directly impacted in some way by this condition; however, they might not be aware of this.
The theme of Diabetes Victoria’s new digital awareness campaign is ‘Invisible Condition’, highlighting that diabetes doesn’t discriminate and that it is too important to ignore. The campaign encourages communities to make their mark with their local Member of Parliament by signing an online petition to increase funding for diabetes research.
Diabetes Victoria CEO Craig Bennett said that with almost 314,000 Victorians living with diabetes and an estimated 125,000 Victorians with undiagnosed diabetes, there was an increasing need to provide expert advice, resources and programs.
“This is so people affected by diabetes can live well and ensure that the seriousness of diabetes is raised among various Members of Parliament at the Victorian Parliamentary Diabetes Support Group meeting later this year,” Mr Bennett said.
“Living with diabetes is 24/7. We all need to know more about diabetes and we’d like to share how Diabetes Victoria can help,” he said.
“Many Australians are at risk – you don’t have to be old and you don’t have to be overweight to develop diabetes – diabetes doesn’t discriminate.”
There are three main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. Each type of diabetes has different underlying causes and may be best managed with different strategies.
However, once you develop diabetes you will have to manage the condition every day for the rest of your life.
To find out more about diabetes, contact Mrs Huebner on 5396 1200.