It is known that Aboriginal Australians have higher rates of diabetes than the non-Aboriginal population in Australia ; now, however, a new study has found a means of early detection for the disease using glucose markers that may help reduce this disturbingly high susceptibility. Research at the University of Queensland into more than 600 Aboriginal Australians who live in a remote community, and who were originally diabetes-free, revealed that the presence of either impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) alone doubled the risk of diabetes .
The scientists discovered that Aboriginal women generally were up to eight times more likely to suffer from diabetes than the general population, while men were up to four times more likely. They also noted that incidence rates got higher with increasing age.
The study noted “Given the life expectancy of around 60 years for Australian Aboriginal peoples, the cumulative incidence of diabetes at age of 60 years calculated in this study provides an approximate estimate of lifetime risk of developing diabetes in this population,” they wrote.
Although the findings should not be generalised too much, the authors argue that these high rates of diabetes among Aboriginal Australians call for “implementation of effective primary prevention strategies at the population level.”

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