Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Keeping Health in Check the Key

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Keeping Health in Check the Key

Article excerpt

THE Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) is an independent statutory authority set up in 1987 by the Federal Government. Its objective is to improve the health and wellbeing of Australians through better health and welfare information and statistics.

You can learn all about it at www.aihw.gov.au .

I paid a visit to their website the other day because I wanted to find out about the prevalence of diabetes in Australia. AIHW released a report in June this year, based on the latest (2007-8) Bureau of Statistics National Health Survey.

I hope you are still with me; I kid myself it gets more interesting ...

In that year, 898,800 Australians had been diagnosed with diabetes at some time in their lives. About 10% had Type 1 diabetes and the other 90% were Type 2 diabetics. Type 1 diabetics are insulin-dependent, with some needing several injections each day.

Most Type 2 diabetics can control their diabetes by lifestyle, diet and weight control, with or without the use of appropriate oral medication. Both types can present very major health risks if the disease is not properly managed.

With proper management, diabetics can lead essentially full and healthy lives. It's worth noting that as many as another 800,000 Aussies are unaware they show symptoms of having diabetes a and that's a real worry.

My purpose is not to provide a poor man's guide to the disease. There are plenty of magnificent websites where you can explore the symptoms, diagnostic tests, the management and the dos and don'ts of the disease. Diabetes Australia's own website, www.diabetesaustralia.com.au, is a first-class starting point if you have any concerns.

I have a good personal reason for being interested in the subject. I was diagnosed as a Type 2 diabetic umpteen years ago and have lived with the diagnosis without any hassles ever since. …

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