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  • Jamaica will join the rest of the world to observe World Diabetes Day on Friday, November 14, under the theme: ‘Healthy Living and Diabetes’.
  • Acting Director, Health Promotion and Protection Branch at the Ministry of Health, Dr. Tamu Davidson-Sadler, said the Government has been working through its national strategic plan to prevent and control diabetes.
  • Dr. Davidson-Sadler added that other strategies include early detection and treatment for persons with the disease, to prevent further complications; and continuous tracking and monitoring.

Jamaica will join the rest of the world to observe World Diabetes Day on Friday, November 14, under the theme: ‘Healthy Living and Diabetes’.

Speaking at a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) ‘Think Tank’, Acting Director, Health Promotion and Protection Branch at the Ministry of Health, Dr. Tamu Davidson-Sadler, said the Government has been working through its national strategic plan to prevent and control diabetes.

“The first strategy is preventing risk factors such as tobacco and alcohol use and physical inactivity,” she noted.

Dr. Davidson-Sadler added that other strategies include early detection and treatment for persons with the disease, to prevent further complications; and continuous tracking and monitoring.

Meanwhile, President of the Diabetes Association of Jamaica, Professor Errol Morrison, said there is a growing trend among young people being affected by the disease.

“We are seeing about 10,000 [youth] with diabetes. Traditionally, diabetes has been seen as a problem in the older age groups; however, over the last couple of decades, we have been seeing an increasing number of youth with diabetes,” he added.

Professor Morrison pointed out that overweight and a lack of physical activity, are major contributing factors for the disease, which ranks among the top three causes of death in Jamaica.

“No more are children playing hide and seek and kicking football. They are all glued to the television and computer screens…they are eating energy-dense foods, which are not being utilized because of their sedentary lifestyle,” he highlighted.

Professor Morrison informed that the disease can be controlled by monitoring, blood pressure control, cholesterol management, diet and exercise.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces.

In observance of World Diabetes Day, the JIS in partnership with Massy Distribution (Jamaica) Limited, will host a health expo and workshop at the agency’s head office in Kingston, on November 14. It is open to several government and private entities.

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