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What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease that raises your glucose levels in your blood. High blood glucose levels are harmful and can damage your heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys and nerves.

Type 2 diabetes usually affects adults over the age of 45 years, but may affect some adults as early as in their third decade. Type 2 diabetes occurs when insulin does not work effectively in the body and/or when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin. A good lifestyle from regular exercise, healthy eating and weight reduction can prevent and delay the onset of diabetes.


The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. Management of type 2 diabetes: A handbook for general practice. East Melbourne, Vic: RACGP, 2020.

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