Statement Article from  Public Health Agency of Canada

Archived - Diabetes Awareness Month and World Diabetes Day November 14, 2014

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November 2014

Each November, we recognize Diabetes Awareness Month with World Diabetes Day taking place on November 14.

Type 2 diabetes and obesity are on the rise, making awareness of this serious disease increasingly important. Nearly 2.4 million Canadians have been diagnosed with diabetes and another 450,000 may be unaware that they have it, without any obvious warning signs or symptoms.

While some risk factors can’t be changed, the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes can be reduced by making healthy lifestyle choices such as eating well and exercising. Canadians can assess their risk of developing type 2 diabetes using the Canadian Diabetes Risk Questionnaire (CANRISK), developed by the Public Health Agency of Canada, and available online and in pharmacies across the country. By knowing your risk, you can start making healthy choices to reduce your risk or even prevent the development of type 2 diabetes. Left untreated, diabetes can lead to many serious complications.

The Government of Canada supports prevention through healthy living initiatives. We invest close to $20 million every year in partnerships that promote healthy living and prevent chronic diseases, including diabetes. In 2014-15, we are also investing $45.8 million to support the Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative (ADI), which aims to reduce type 2 diabetes in First Nations and Inuit through community-led and culturally appropriate services.

Additionally, $18 million in private sector funding has been leveraged through our multi-sectoral partnerships approach to promote healthy living and prevent chronic disease. This has expanded the reach and impact of the initiatives we support. For example, Play for Prevention is a diabetes prevention project for urban Aboriginal youth in Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba; and Build Our Kids’ Success (BOKS) is a before-school physical activity program that can help keep kids regularly active, and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

The Government of Canada also supports basic science, clinical health services and population health research that addresses type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

As Minister of Health, I encourage all Canadians to learn more about diabetes, and the steps they can take to help prevent the onset of this serious disease.

Rona Ambrose
Minister of Health
Government of Canada

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