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Can we avert a diabetes catastrophe in Australia?

Diabetes is likely to cement its place as the fastest growing epidemic in history

At the present time, one person is dying of diabetes every seven seconds, but the news can only talk about victims of hurricanes with houses flying in the air.

    Nassim Taleb, Antifragile: things that gain from disorder1

During the past three decades, the number of people with diabetes has more than doubled globally, making it one of the most important public health challenges for all nations.2 During this time, the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) has had a consistent history of highlighting the “rise and rise” of diabetes as a major public health threat.

In a 1985 MJA editorial, the sparse information on diabetes epidemiology, and its socioeconomic and public health effects on Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, was highlighted.3 This was in spite of evidence on overseas trends that predicted a future epidemic. Ten years later, in another MJA

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