Diabetes Voice

Diabetes Voice is the online magazine of IDF. It covers the latest developments in diabetes care, education, prevention, research, health policy and economics, as well as themes related to living with diabetes. Diabetes Voice goes to the heart of issues that are crucial to all those who can further the promotion of diabetes care, prevention, and a cure worldwide.

Editor-in-Chief: Dr Douglas Villarroel (Bolivia)

Diabetes Voice was made available as a print and digital magazine until 2018. It is now available as a digital platform at diabetesvoice.org.

Archive content of the magazine until March 2018 is available below.

Issue: November 2015
Section: Diabetes views

Let’s make healthy eating a right, not a privilege

Last update: 15/03/2017

World Diabetes Day (WDD), celebrated every November 14, is recognized as the largest global awareness campaign for all types of diabetes, including type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes (GDM). Created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organization, WDD, now a year-long campaign, was developed in response to the destructive effect of diabetes on public health and its rapid rise in prevalence. Today, it is estimated that 400 million people worldwide are living with diabetes; about 90-95% of the total have type 2 diabetes.

This year, the WDD campaign represents the rights of all people worldwide to have access to healthy food which if prioritized will save lives, reduce the global burden of diabetes and save billions in lost productivity and healthcare costs.

IDF believes the right to access healthy food is a critical preventive strategy for type 2 diabetes. IDF also recognizes that healthy eating is a critical tool to promote effective self-management of all types of diabetes. Healthy eating is a cornerstone of successful diabetes management along with a comprehensive healthcare strategy and medicine, such as insulin.
No matter how you choose to get involved in the WDD campaign for 2015, here are a few key facts that will help you take a stand for diabetes in your community:

• Diabetes is a huge and growing burden: whilst some 387 million adults were living with diabetes in 2014, this number is expected to skyrocket to around 600 million people by 2035.
• A healthy lifestyle could prevent up to 70% of type 2 diabetes, and healthy eating can help reduce risks.
• A healthy diet containing leafy vegetables, fresh fruit, whole grains, lean meat, unsweetened yogurt and nuts can help reduce a person’s risk of type 2 diabetes and reduce complications in people with diabetes.
• More of us will develop and live with type 1 diabetes. While type 1 diabetes cannot yet be prevented, a healthy lifestyle is an important part of effective management of the disease.
• Encouraging healthy eating habits in young children is key to halting the rise of the diabetes epidemic. By ensuring the health of future generations, we take a step toward ensuring sustainable development.

WDD 2015 around the world

WDD is the world’s largest diabetes awareness campaign with around 500 events organised for 2014 in more than 100 countries. Here is what’s on schedule from a variety of IDF Member Associations and other organisations for 2015!


In Sudan, the National Childhood Diabetes Center, in collaboration with Jabir Abuelizz Diabetes Center, Eldaw Hajog Mini Diabetes Clinic and Elzubair Musa Charity Diabetes Clinic have planned a variety of activities throughout the country from 12 to 18 November. These include diabetes health day campaigns at various clinics, the annual WDD Charity Night, diabetes educators courses, and pre-scheduled meetings with Federal and State Ministries of Health.


In France, IDF Europe is organising a lunch debate on “Diabetes: Youth and Sport” on Tuesday 27 October at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Therese Comodini Cachia MEP (Malta) and Nicola Caputo MEP (Italy) will host a debate addressing the many challenges faced by young people with diabetes. The role of physical activity and sport in the management of type 1 and type 2 diabetes and the prevention of type 2 diabetes will be a key focus. Other awareness raising activities at the European Parliament during the week include: promotion of healthy lunches, an informational exhibition area and opportunity for people to take a blood glucose (BG) test, reflecting the importance of regular BG testing and early diagnosis. The purpose of bringing the WDD campaign into the heart of the EU Parliament is to encourage policy makers to implement effective strategies and policies for the prevention and management of diabetes.

In Belgium, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) will hold an exclusive and interactive round-table discussion in Brussels on November 12 to promote the importance of acting together to promote healthy eating and ensure access to healthy food. The event will also mark the release of the diabetes prevalence, mortality and expenditure figures from the IDF Diabetes Atlas Seventh Edition.

In Denmark, Danish pharmacies and healthcare centres in collaboration with the Danish Diabetes Association invite the public to test their risk of developing diabetes and have their blood glucose level measured at a large number of locations around the country. Several iconic buildings around Denmark will be lit in blue, among them the castle of Kronborg in Helsinore. Hamlet will not attend the event though.

In the United Kingdom, Diabetes UK will launch a new campaign - Taking Control - in the week leading up to World Diabetes Day to make sure more people get access to diabetes education to help them manage their condition well. For the campaign, people who have taken diabetes education courses will discuss how it has changed their life. While finding better ways to support healthcare teams to encourage people with diabetes to sign up for a diabetes education course, the campaign will also assess if people with diabetes are receiving the necessary opportunities through the healthcare system to learn about their diabetes, and therefore become better skilled to manage the condition.

Middle East and North Africa

In Qatar, the Qatar Diabetes Association (QDA) celebrates WDD in conjunction with the rest of the world. However, on the 13 November, the QDA will hold an awareness walkathon around the lake of Aspire Park in Doha that will also feature blood glucose tests and nutrition counselling. The length of the walk is approximately 1 kilometre and participants will be provided with free t-shirts, caps, healthy snacks and water at the event.

In United Arab Emirates, IDF leadership will participate in a Global NCD Alliance Forum convening in Sharjah, UAE (13-15 November), entitled “NCD Advocacy and Accountability in the Post-2015 Era.” As a part of Forum events, IDF will lead a lunchtime session, Uniting to Meet the Challenges of Diabetes, on November 14th. The goal of the lunchtime session is to foster full participation from NCD leaders for strategizing, and together choose one new unifying idea to fight diabetes and advocate change for a healthier world today.

North America and Caribbean

In Canada, November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and to celebrate the Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA), Manitoba & Nunavut Region, is hosting a special evening in support of Manitoba Diabetes camps and their “Youth in Action” Programme on November 14. The 7th annual Best Banting Evening 2015 will provide guests with the opportunity to mix and mingle with friends, colleagues and distinct members of the community. Live and Silent Auctions will be featured with a fantastic array of prizes. The event will be hosted by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) top news anchor, Janet Stewart, and also feature World Renowned Hypnotist Sailesh Jiawan.

In Trinidad and Tobago, Diabetes Association of Trinidad and Tobago is holding a day-long Diabetes in the Limelight Jamboree. This festival will include diabetes education, foot examinations, screenings of blood glucose and other diagnostic tests, a weight clinic, vision testing, storytelling for children, artwork displays, a diabetes education poster competition, and several education booths including information on nutrition and much more!

In the USA, the American Diabetes Association is organising a Luncheon Symposium and Expo in North Texas on November 12 that will feature distinguished speakers from the local community who will give their perspective on the health and welfare of the region and provide updates on health and wellness programmes that are working. Among the speakers is the Mayor of Fort Worth, Betsy Price who spearheaded the city's initiative to become one of the nation's first Blue Zone major cities, helping people live long and better lives.

South and Central America

In Brazil, the The Sociedade Brasileira de Diabetes will light up the following locations in brilliant blue along with complementary celebrations: the Maracanã Stadium with a diabetes screening campaign; the 30 metres (98 feet) Christ the Redeemer Statue (Cristo Redentor) and Sugarloaf Mountain Peak (Pão de Açúcar). In Sao Paulo, the Octávio Frias de Oliveira Bridge (a cable-stayed bridge that is 138 metres tall (453 feet)) will be lit, as well as other locations throughout Brazil.

In Costa Rica, the Asociación Salvadoreña De Diabéticos is holding a "Stop Diabetes In El Salvador" walk and will attract more than 2,000 people with banners, balloons, musical bands, all dressed up on blue, and creating awareness on diabetes, culminating with a Health Fair.

South East Asia

In Bangladesh, WDD flash mob will be organised in the Shahbagh neigbourhood of the capital city Dhaka. Hundreds of people are expected to participate and create awareness about diabetes.

Western Pacific

In Taiwan, the Chinese Taipei Diabetes Association (CTDA) will celebrate WDD 2015 with many Taiwanese events, including: a national marathon cycling event, a garden festival at Sun Moon Lake, CTDA’s annual diabetes walk, a monument lighting ceremony at Wenwu Temple and much more.

In Australia, Diabetes South Australia (Diabetes SA) will be celebrating World Diabetes Day with a seminar for people living with type 1 diabetes. The seminar will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre, on November 11, and will focus on Innovations in Diabetes Management. The seminar provides a unique opportunity to learn about the latest studies and technological advancements in the field of diabetes. Diabetes SA will also be heading to the city's Rundle Mall on November 13 to help raise the community's awareness of the prevention of type 2 diabetes by handing out the Australian Type 2 Diabetes Risk (AusDrisk) Assessment Tool for people to calculate their own risk.

In New Zealand, throughout November, Diabetes New Zealand will put the Mobile Diabetes Awareness Service on a roadshow visiting 30 towns and cities across the country. On WDD, it will stop in Porirua, a city 25 minutes north of the capital city Wellington. Porirua is home to a significant number of Maori and Pacific people who are at higher risk of diabetes.

See how WDD 2015 is being marked all over the world and share your own event information at www.idf.org/wdd-events.

For more information about IDF networks and participation online:

Participate in WDD events and share your photos with the diabetes online community. You can also take blue circle selfie and share it on social media channels.

Or join social media to be part of the conversation around WDD! Follow us IDF on Twitter and create your own #WDD Tweet or share one of our suggested tweets.

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