World Diabetes Experience Day: Large Crowds at the DZD Stand

Interactive games, expert tips on nutrition, exercise and diabetes, the latest from diabetes research – the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD) offered this and much more to the 7,000 visitors to the World Diabetes Experience Day on November 16 in Berlin.

Interested visitors at the DZD stand. Source: DZD

Making diabetes visible and tangible, even for people who do not have the disease, was the goal of this year's World Diabetes Experience Day at the Sony Center in Berlin. The DZD participated in the event with an information stand and four presentations by diabetes experts to raise awareness about the metabolic disease and current research findings. Many people took the opportunity to talk to diabetes experts, test their knowledge in various games, or learn about the metabolic disease. Visitors were also able to determine their diabetes risk with a simple test.

Up-to-date information from DZD experts
Experts from the DZD were not only present at the stand, but also on the event stage. Professor Peter Schwarz from the Paul Langerhans Institute in Dresden (PLID) presented the latest findings on diabetes and exercise. Walking as few as 10,000 steps per day can help to improve fitness and health. A tip to achieve this number of steps: Simply use the stairs more often instead of escalators or elevators. Pedometers and apps can help motivate people to exercise more.

Under the motto “News from Research: Can Diabetes Be Prevented?” DZD experts gave insights into their work. In an interview with moderator Sybille Seitz (ARD and rbb), DZD Managing Director Dr. Astrid Glaser reported on the metabolic disease, the diabetes risk score and the research of the DZD. Professor Anette Ziegler (Helmholtz Zentrum München and the DZD) provided up-to-date information on the most common metabolic disease in childhood and adolescence, type 1 diabetes. She reported on how it is possible to determine whether one has an increased risk of developing the autoimmune disease and what researchers are working on to delay or even prevent the onset of the disease in the future. For her work, she was also honored with the "glucohead 2019" award at the World Diabetes Experience Day. The Heart and Diabetes Center of North Rhine-Westphalia awards the prize to creative scientists conducting outstanding projects in diabetology.

Balanced diet
In addition to a genetic predisposition, an unhealthy lifestyle is one of the risk factors for type 2 diabetes. “Classic Mediterranean diets rich in vegetable oils, nuts, vegetables and fish can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. Stefan Kabisch (German Institute of Human Nutrition and the DZD). “Also people with diabetes benefit from a balanced Mediterranean diet”.

But why exactly do we eat what we eat? What are the relationships between diet, brain function and metabolism? In her presentation, the psychologist and brain researcher Professor Soyoung Park (German Institute of Human Nutrition and the DZD) gave first answers to these questions. Current studies suggest, for example, that "food envy" plays a role in determining which food is particularly attractive for us.


The new concept of the World Diabetes Day was very well received, as the large crowds at the DZD stand showed. Top row from L to R: Prof. Schwarz on the topic of the "Exercise APP", part of the DZD exhibition stand, Dr. Kabisch on the topic of "Nutrition", Prof. Ziegler on the topic of "Type 1 Diabetes", announcement of quiz and games at the DZD stand, Prof. Park on the topic of "Food Choices". Bottom row from L to R: award ceremony for Prof. Ziegler, impressions from the DZD stand. Source: DZD