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Latest News

Men's Health Week 

For Men's Health Week 2017 communities across Australia come together and create fun and engaging events, promotions and activities tailored to the needs of men and boys.

This year's theme "HEALTHY BODY – HEALTHY MIND: KEEPING THE BALANCE" explores the different ways men and boys are managing to keep healthy, physically and emotionally, in a busy and sometimes challenging world.

Click here to find out more.

COTA SA's Men's Health event

Come along and meet Diabetes SA at COTA SA's Men's Health event "Keeping the Balance – Healthy Mind, Healthy Body" on Wednesday 14 June, 9.30am – 12.30pm at COTA SA, 16 Hutt Street, Adelaide.

Come along and listen to six expert speakers discuss men's health, have a free health check from a health professional (bookings essential) and see Diabetes SA's Health Promotions Officer, Danielle for recipe cards, resources on diabetes and various healthy eating information as well as other information stalls on the day. RSVP your spot today via COTA SA on 8232 0422.

Click here to find out more.


Byetta & Bydureon

Differences & similarities

There are a number of medications currently available in Australia for the management of type 2 diabetes, but for the purposes of this article we will concentrate on just two medications Byetta and Bydureon.

Byetta and Bydureon are both injectable medications used in the management of type 2 diabetes.

They both belong to the class of medication called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP- 1) analogues and they both contain the active ingredient exenatide. There are, however some important differences between Byetta and Bydureon.

Byetta and Bydureon both work by increasing the body’s own insulin production from the pancreas, unlike insulin injections that replace the body’s own insulin.

Additionally, these medications may assist with weight loss in some individuals with type 2 diabetes because there is a delay in gastric emptying which slows down glucose absorption and decreases appetite.

Byetta is administered as an injection twice a day, morning and night on an empty stomach (30 to 60 minutes before food) while Bydureon is injected just once a week at any time of the day, either with or without food. Because these two medications are administered via injection, they are often confused with insulin, but they manage blood glucose levels in a very different way to insulin injections.

Bydureon has only been listed as a subsidised medication under the Federal Government’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) since 1 September 2016, while Byetta has been available on the PBS since 2010.

Like all medication, Byetta and Bydureon come with potential adverse effects including gastrointestinal upset and pancreatitis.

Both Byetta and Bydureon require refrigeration until they are opened, but can safely be stored at room temperature (25°C – 30°C) for 28 days.

More information

The focus of this article has been on Byetta and Bydureon only. Should you like more specific information about your diabetes medication, talk to your diabetes health care team or your local pharmacist at your next visit. For general diabetes advice contact Diabetes SA on 1300 198 204.

Read the original article

Click here to read the original article. Published in Diabetes SA Living Magazine – March 2017, page 23.

Additional information


Health Professional Seminar – The Highs and Lows of Carbohydrates

The NDSS and Diabetes SA Health Professional Seminar, 'The Highs and Lows of Carbohydrates' was conducted in the beautiful Adelaide Convention Centre City Rooms 1 & 2 on Friday 26 May 2017.

Associate Professor Grant Brinkworth, Principal Research Scientist, CSIRO

Associate Professor Grant Brinkworth presented the second year results from his clinical study which investigated the impact of a low carbohydrate, high unsaturated / low saturated fat diet, compared to a high unrefined carbohydrate and low fat diet in people living with type 2 diabetes.

Ms Sharaya Carter, APD and PhD candidate, University of South Australia

Sharaya Carter presented the results of the ongoing clinical trial that is investigating the effects of intermittent energy restriction compared to continuous energy restriction in people living with type 2 diabetes.

Honorary Professor Kerin O'Dea, University of South Australia

Professor Kerin O'Dea presented data on the nutritional composition and health benefits of the traditional diet of Australian Aboriginal people; which consisted of uncultivated plant foods, generally low glycaemic index carbohydrates that were high in fibre. Kerin will draw on her own research with communities in remote Australia, and also on early reports from South East Australia in the early years of English colonisation.


A general theme running through all presentations was that there is not a 'one size fits all' approach in terms of how we eat, be that low carbohydrate high fat, the 5:2 style of diet or a hunter-gatherer approach, and everything in between. There are so many variables to consider around food in terms of availability, accessibility and affordability, and this was raised by the presenters and audience as an issue. What the evidence presented does highlight is the need to promote high quality, less processed foods, regardless of whether the food is carbohydrate, fat or protein.

Click here to see more photos.

Click here to watch the webcast.









The National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) is an initiative of the Australian Government administered with the assistance of Diabetes Australia.


Insulin resistance & pre-diabetes

What is insulin resistance?

insulin-resistanceInsulin resistance is a term given to a condition where the body's cells fail to respond normally to the hormone insulin, resulting in blood glucose levels that are exceedingly high over a prolonged period of time.

How does insulin affect the body?

Insulin is a hormone that is made in the pancreas and regulates the body’s use of glucose (a term for sugar). When we eat foods such as breads, cereal, starchy vegetables, legumes, milk, yoghurt and sweets, the carbohydrates from these foods are broken down into glucose and released into the bloodstream. Insulin is essential in order to use or store this glucose as energy in the muscle cells and liver. Insulin resistance leads to higher levels of glucose in the blood as the body's cells become resistant to the effect of insulin and are no longer able to work effectively.

Why is it important?

As a result of high glucose levels, the muscle, fat and liver cells build up a tolerance to the insulin and it doesn't respond adequately, causing the pancreas to compensate by producing more insulin. As a consequence, the high levels of insulin can cause systemic inflammation resulting in insulin resistance. Insulin resistance affects both peripheral (nerve) and adipose (fat) tissue which may lead to obesity and other related metabolic alterations such as Metabolic Syndrome and the development of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.

What are the syptoms of insulin resistance and pre-diabetes?

There are no signs or symptoms of insulin resistance and pre-diabetes, you may be insulin resistant for years without knowing you are at risk. People with pre-diabetes are at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Risk factors for insulin resistance?

Although the exact cause of insulin resistance is unknown, the major contributors are thought to be genetics, central obesity, lack of physical activity and diet.

Research suggests that genes that promote higher blood levels of triglycerides (type of fat in your blood) may be triggered by a poor diet and inactive lifestyle and assists in the development of insulin resistance.

The location of fat stores in the body also appears to be a sign of insulin resistance. Obesity-related insulin resistance is a result of abnormally increased central (abdominal) obesity due to unused calories or excess nutrient intake, or a combination of both. Adipose (fat) tissue in the hips, buttocks and thighs appears to be less of a risk factor.

Other risk factors may include ethnicity, hormones, steroid use, some medications (antipsychotic agents, anticonvulsants and beta-blockers); sleep apnoea and cigarette smoking.

How is it managed?

An effective strategy in the prevention and treatment of insulin resistance involves making lifestyle changes to prevent diabetes, which include increasing physical activity, healthy eating, medications and education.

Physical activity

Studies have shown that increased physical activity improves insulin sensitivity by allowing the muscles to absorb more glucose without the need for insulin, which improves insulin resistance and helps lower blood glucose levels. It is recommended to get at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity every day of the week, and 2-3 sessions of resistance training per week. The more physically active you are the greater the benefits will be.

Healthy eating

Adopting healthy food choices can assist people to lose weight and reverse insulin resistance. Healthy eating for people with insulin resistance and diabetes is no different from what is recommended for everyone. Choosing healthy foods, controlling portions, high-fibre, lower glycemic index carbohydrate foods and limit foods that are high in saturated fat. An accredited practising dietitian can help you plan and implement these lifestyle changes.


There are currently no medications approved for use in Australia to specifically reduce insulin resistance in pre-diabetes. Currently Metformin is used as a first line therapy for people with type 2 diabetes, and may be effective in reducing glucose and triglyceride levels. However, its role in treating insulin resistance has not been approved for this purpose in Australia, with lifestyle changes shown to be more effective use of treatment.

Where to get further advice?

Any further advice should be discussed with your general practitioner (GP) for further investigation to help manage your risk of insulin resistance and pre-diabetes.

Read the original article

Click here to read the original article. Published in Diabetes SA Living Magazine – March 2017, page 14.

Additional information


Injection technique

An increasing number of Australians are injecting diabetes medications

This is due to an increase in prevalence of diabetes and the increase of non-insulin injectable medicines (such as Byetta and Bydureon) for people with type 2 diabetes.

Insulin therapy is essential for the management of type 1 diabetes.

It is also being used in people with type 2 diabetes to achieve optimal blood glucose levels.

Insulin is also required for women with gestational diabetes who are unable to maintain blood glucose levels in the recommended range in pregnancy with diet and exercise alone.

Proper injection technique by people using injectable diabetes medications is essential to reduce varying absorption rates, to improve the effect of the medication and to achieve blood glucose level targets.

The subcutaneous layer (fat layer) is the preferred site of injection as it can provide a more consistent absorption of injected medication.

Correct administration of diabetes injectable medications requires consideration of the following:

Injection site

The choice of injection site should take into consideration the requirements of different injectable medications. The most common is the abdomen due to its convenience and tendency to more rapid and consistent insulin uptake.

Needle length

Shorter length pen needles (4, 5 and 6mm) are recommended for the initiation of subcutaneous injectable medications in children, adolescents and adults of all sizes. There is no medical rationale for use of longer pen needles. When using a syringe, needle length no longer than 8mm is recommended.

Use of a lifted skinfold and angle of injection

The size and angle of insertion of the needle used for injection, and the need for a lifted skinfold should be determined according to clinical examination and consideration by a diabetes health professional.

Other considerations

Injections should not be administered through clothing. ‹‹ Review of injection technique should be completed at least annually for adults and at each visit for children and adolescents, or when lipodystrophy (thickening or breakdown of subcutaneous tissue) has been identified.

Read the original article

Click here to read the original article. Published in Diabetes SA Living Magazine – March 2017, page 22.

Additional information


National Diabetes Week 2017

National Diabetes Week (9 – 15 July) aims to raise the awareness of diabetes in the community. Diabetes is Australia's fastest growing chronic condition and there are more than 103,000 South Australians diagnosed with diabetes.

Importance of the annual cycle of care for optimal diabetes management


As part of National Diabetes Week 2017, Diabetes SA will be focusing on increasing the awareness of the importance of the annual cycle of care for optimal diabetes management.

As part of the awareness campaign, Diabetes SA has some resources available for all health professionals to download and order.

The National Diabetes Week Resource Pack this year will include an A4 and A3 promotional poster, 'AusDrisk Tool,' 'Goals of Management' flyer and NDSS factsheets on 'Diabetes-Related Complications' and 'Diabetes Distress'.

AusDrisk Tool

ausdrisk tool

Are you at risk of type 2 diabetes? The Australian Type 2 Diabetes Risk Assessment (AusDrisk) Tool is a quick test for people to assess their own risk of type 2 diabetes. The AusDrisk Tool can be used to test your family and friends to see if they are at risk as there are quite a few people walking around with diabetes and may not realise.

Click here to download the AusDrisk Tool and assess your risk for type 2 diabetes.

Click here to assess your risk online.

Goals of Management


This information sheet is a guide to assist in the management of diabetes. It is important to have regular checks with your healthcare team to ensure you understand what your numbers signify and how they relate to your specific diabetes management.

Click here to download your copy of the Goals of Management information sheet.

Diabetes-Related Complications


High blood glucose levels over a long period of time can cause damage of the body's organs, blood vessels and nerves. This factsheet goes through the most common types of diabetes-related complications and how someone can reduce their risk of them occurring in the future.

Click here to download your copy of the Diabetes-Related Complications factsheet.

Diabetes Distress

Managing stress

Diabetes is a lifelong condition and can be challenging to live with at times. Sometimes you can feel distressed which can include feeling frustrated, guilty, sad, or worried. There are many ways to reduce diabetes distress and this factsheet helps explain what steps to take to minimise its occurrence.

Click here to download your copy of the Diabetes Distress factsheet.

Request your pack today!

NDW2017-packNational Diabetes Week Resource Pack for Health Professionals

If you are a health professional that works with people living with diabetes, to request a National Diabetes Week resource pack of either 25 or 50, email Diabetes SA today on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

National Diabetes Week Seminar


Each year Diabetes SA holds a Seminar to mark National Diabetes Week and highlight the many different aspects of diabetes management to support people living with diabetes, and their families.

Diabetes SA's National Diabetes Week Seminar theme for 2017 is Diabetes Behind Closed Doors. Diabetes affects every part of someone's life and can create issues that can be difficult to discuss with family, friends or health care providers. These sensitive issues may be embarrassing but are very important to discuss as many of these conditions are treatable.

Event details

  • Where: City Rooms 1 & 2, Adelaide Convention Centre, North Terrace, Adelaide
  • When: Saturday 8 July 2017
  • Time: 9.30am – 12.30pm (arrive by 9.15am for a 9.30am start)
  • Cost: Free to all NDSS Registrants and their families. Tea, coffee and morning tea provided.

Click here to find out more.

National Diabetes Week Social Media

Join in on the conversation!

We would love to hear from you on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We will be posting updates throughout the week and encourage you to share and 're-tweet' our content and help increase the awareness of the annual cycle of care for optimal diabetes management.

Media Contact

Diabetes SA has a number of media spokespeople who can assist you with information about diabetes, healthy lifestyles, diabetes management and other topics of interest for people with diabetes. Please direct all enquiries to Fiona Benton, General Manager, phone (08) 8354 5833 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Support Diabetes SA

At Diabetes SA, we pride ourselves on being able to provide vital services and programs to people living with diabetes. However, as a non-government funded charity, we can't do it alone! By making a donation you are helping us empower people to live well with diabetes.

Click here to donate online. All donations over $2 are tax deductible. 


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