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European Diabetes Round Table - abstract from the Austrian Diabetes Association

Diabetes has become a huge health problem and socio-economic burden affecting more than 50 million Europeans. Although it´s well known that diabetes is highly associated with micro- and macrovascular disease potentially leading to blindness, amputation, nephropathy, cardiovascular disease and also increased mortality, diabetes ? in contrast to disorders such cancer or coronary heart disease - is commonly not perceived as a severe and potentially life-threatening disease. However, awareness of diabetes is necessary to allow effective preventive and also therapeutic measures.

Changes in dietary intake as well as increased physical activity will help to reduce overweight and obesity which turned out to be a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Great efforts need to be made to reduce intake of monosaccharides and saturated fats in the population. 

Negotiations with representatives of the food industry on reductions of sugar or fat contents of beverages and snacks would probably be more effective when conducted on a European than on a national level. 
> Additionally, other preventive measures such as effective smoking bans should be placed throughout the whole EU. Both, children and adults need to be encouraged to increase physical activity not only on the micro-level but also on the macro-level environment.

In the past years several new and very effective diabetes treatments became available allowing individualization of diabetes therapy. In order to allow best care for patients with diabetes, high quality medical training and specialization of health care professionals in the field of endocrinology and diabetology are necessary.

Assoz.Prof. Priv.-Doz. Dr. Susanne Kaser Univ. Klinik für Innere Medizin I Stv. Direktorin Medizinische Universität Innsbruck Anichstrasse 35
6020 Innsbruck
Tel: 0043-512-504-81407
Fax: 0043-512-504-28539
e-mail: susanne.kaser@i-med.ac.at

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