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Half of the Thai people afflicted with diabetes do not know they have the ailments, said Dr Petch Rod-aree, secretary-general of Diabetes Association of Thailand, on Friday.
According to the International Diabetes Federation, 387 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes. As for Thailand, 6.9 percent of Thai men above 15 are afflicted with diabetes, 10.1 percent of Thais aged 45-59 are afflicted; and 3.4 percent of people aged 30-44 are afflicted.
But half of these people do not know they have diabetes, said Dr Petch.
He blamed obesity as the major cause of diabetes. A recent survey shows that 30 percent of Thai men and 40 women of Thai women are overweight hence putting them at risk of becoming obese.
However, he pointed out that the risk could reduce if they keep exercising on regular basis, change their lifestyle and eating habits.
“Everyone can protect themselves from getting diabetes by exercising on regular basis, reporting for regular medical checkups and adopting healthy eating,” he suggested.