DAVID Mason is one of 2043 people in Orange who are living with diagnosed diabetes every day.
Managing his diet and taking medication has been a part of daily life for Mr Mason who was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 1987.
Mr Mason represents 5.1 per cent of our city’s population based on statistics released by the Diabetes Council of Australia to coincide with World Diabetes Day today.
Mr Mason, a cabinet maker, was diagnosed just a couple of years after his mother.
“We didn’t know of course at the time that hereditary factors played a part,” he said.
Mr Mason said his symptoms revolved around a general feeling of lethargy.
“I was on blood pressure tablets at the time and no matter what I did I just couldn’t get over the tiredness,” he said.
When he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes Mr Mason had to make one major dietary change.
“I really did like soft drink and now I do drink it but it is the unsweetened version,” he said.
“Soft drink is my achilles heel.”
He now manages his diabetes with a combination of good diet and medication.
“If I go out and have sweets for example then I just have to watch myself for the next few days,” he said.
“You get to know what you can and you can’t do to stay well.”
Mr Mason said with the exception of soft drink his diet was identified as being reasonably healthy.
“When I was first diagnosed there was more of an emphasis on sugar but now there is also a focus on fat in your diet when you’re diabetic,” he said.
Liverpool in Sydney has the highest number of diabetics per head of population in the state with 6246 diabetics, followed by Mt Druitt and Campbelltown.
Closer to home Bathurst has 1965 diabetics representing 4.9 per cent of the population. Dubbo has the highest statistics in the region with 2348 diabetics, which is 5.6 per cent of its population.