There are roughly 2000 people in Lismore living with diabetes, about 5% of the population.
Tony Adams from Diabetes Australia said every seven minutes someone in Australia is diagnosed with diabetes.
Diabetes is an illness where the pancreas can’t produce enough insulin to change sugar (glucose) from food into energy. There are two types of diabetes, type I and type II.
On Tuesday more than 100 people attended a seminar at the Lismore Workers Club to hear experts talk about managing the disease.
“One of the messages we need to get across is about early intervention, we need to get to people early, kids in school, young adults, and make them aware of the importance of a good diet and exercise and make them aware of the consequences of not living that lifestyle and living with diabetes,” Tony said. “Diabetes can have all sorts of consequences, including losing limbs, loss of eyesight, loss of feeling in fingers.”
Tony said one of best ways people could manage their diabetes was with a low glycemic index (GI) diet and exercise.
Low GI food releases glucose into the blood slowly, as opposed to things like sugared soft drinks and cordials.
Some of the changes you can make to your diet and lifestyle to decrease the risk of diabetes or to help reduce the effects if you have the disease are:
Eat oats for breakfast because a lot of other breakfast cereals are high in sugar.
White bread out, multigrain or wholegrain bread is better.
Eat a balanced diet
Eat five smaller meals a day, with portions of carbohydrates, protein and vegetables.
Exercise, for men, keep the weight off the belly and women keep weight off thighs and hips.