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Diabetes is more than just a health issue

17 Jul 2018

The issue of diabetes has become one of the most pressing healthcare concerns in our modern society, but it cannot be viewed solely from a medical and public health perspective, commented Professor Teo Yik Ying, Dean.

More than just a personal health problem, diabetes is closely linked to other factors such as economics, urban planning, societal culture, financial status, dietary habits and marketing tactics from the food industry.

Prof Teo added that there is a correlation between diabetes and more developed countries, where there are usually extensive transport infrastructures in place that reduce the need to walk.

However, he pointed out that diabetes also affects those who are less privileged. In many countries, the poorest can’t afford the most nutritious food, so they turn to foods that have less nutritional value and are higher in fat and sugar content to keep them full. He highlighted the need for food manufacturers to play their part in reducing the amount of fat and sugar that goes into their products.

While there is still more to be done, he acknowledged that the food industry has been paying more attention to social responsibility, but this change will take very long.

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