Sixteen percent of the Emirati people are diabetic, while 26 percent are genetically and environmentally predisposed to developing the disease later in life, but are unaware of the risks, according to the latest statistics released by the health ministry.
Abdel Ghaffar Abdel Ghafour, under-secretary for curative medicine at the ministry, told Khaleej Times on Sunday that lifestyle is largely to be blamed for the rise.
He said large variety of rich foods available today and the lack of regular exercise places many people at risk of developing diabetes.
He called for creating awareness among schoolchildren, at hospitals and medical centers, as well as offering regular check-ups to people with a family history of diabetes, those who suffer from obesity or those who display mild symptoms of the disease.
"Treatment is simple and effective in the early stages of the disease, good diet and plenty of regular exercises.
"If such a regime is maintained there should be no problems. Schools should also stress sporting activities," Ghafour told the paper.
He said that the statistics released are for the years 1999/2000, which show a one percent increase in diabetic cases from the previous year (1998/9999) – Albawaba.com