The City of Cape Town held a free diabetes and blood pressure testing drive at the Civic Centre last week.
As part of the Healthy Lifestyle campaign, the City is raising awareness about the dangers of unhealthy eating and sugary drinks.
The reduction of sugary drink consumption can considerably reduce the risk of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes.
The prevalence of diabetes in South Africa is 9.5%, with almost half of those individuals going undiagnosed.
The campaign focuses on Type 2 diabetes, which can be prevented and treated effectively through proper nutrition and adopting a healthy lifestyle.
Mayor Patricia de Lille said the City wants to assist residents to make informed decisions and invite them to join a healthy living mission.
She said many non-communicable diseases could be prevented simply by making better choices about what people eat and by ensuring that people get enough physical activity to lead healthier lives.
“Often people do not realise the importance of conscious eating and are unaware of the dangers of junk food and sugary drinks.
“The campaign’s objective is to raise awareness on the risks associated with unhealthy lifestyles and encourage residents to take care of themselves by eating healthily and making key changes towards a healthier lifestyle.”
There are two common types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune disease, where the body no longer produces insulin. This condition requires you to consult your healthcare practitioner to manage the condition and prevent complications. Most people with Type 1 diabetes require injectable insulin.
Type 2 diabetes is often called “sugar diabetes”’ and can be brought on from poor lifestyle, such as eating lots of unhealthy foods and not exercising.
Some people are more at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes because they have a family history of the disease and are more susceptible.
Many people have Type 2 diabetes and do not realise it, so it is very important to get tested to ensure it is managed and that complications such as high blood pressure, heart disease, amputations or blindness are prevented.