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Home> Published Issues> 2022> Volume 9, No. 2, December 2022

Reducing the Prevalence of Diabetes in Mauritius through a Food Systems Transformation

M. S. Bénédicte Anthony
Research Intern, United Nations Resident Coordinator’s Office for Mauritius and Seychelles, Port Louis, Mauritius

Abstract—The diabetes epidemic is affecting many of our societies and isolated Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are particularly vulnerable as compared to countries on continental lands. Overweight and obesity rates are prevalent in those net food importing SIDS, so much so that diabetes and other Non-communicable Diseases (NCDs) are leading causes of death. The ease of access to cheap fast foods and ultra-processed products mean that items of lower nutritive value are more popular among populations. At the same time, our sedentary lifestyles trigger a decrease in physical activity to maintain a healthy weight. The effects of climate change, the socio-economic crises nurtured by the COVID-19 pandemic and the knock-on effects of the war in Ukraine only made a dire situation worse. Food shortages and rising food and fuel prices mean that the less financially able have more limited food choices, to the detriment of healthy eating habits. Against such a background, what are the solutions SIDS have put in place to alleviate the impacts of the food and nutrition crises? This paper provides a commentary on Mauritian initiatives to transform food systems, encourage local production of fruit and vegetables and reduce imports of ultra-processed foods. With the various crises we face signalling an impetus for change, agriculture and nutrition can be clients for transformation towards a healthier consumption of local and nutritious produce. 
Index Terms—diabetes, nutrition, food security, local production, sustainable development, food sovereignty 

Cite: M. S. Bénédicte Anthony, "Reducing the Prevalence of Diabetes in Mauritius  through a Food Systems Transformation ," Journal of Advanced Agricultural Technologies, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 59-64, December 2022. Doi: 10.18178/joaat.9.2.59-64

Copyright © 2022 by the authors. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0), which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided that the article is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

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