Diabetes is developing into an epidemic and Tasmania is at the forefront of the problem, a new report warns.
Called Facing the Health of Australians , the Australian Medicines Industry report said more than 90 per cent of Australians did not consider diabetes a major health concern.
This was despite predictions that the incidence of type 2 diabetes was set to triple by 2031.
Also, more than 16,000 Tasmanians were living with type 2 diabetes.
Some 65.6 per cent of Tasmanians aged 18 and over were overweight or obese, a major precursor to type 2 diabetes.
There are two types of diabetes - type 1, a life-long auto-immune disease that usually occurs in childhood, and type 2, that usually affects older adults and is often lifestyle related.
Launceston general practitioner Gary Kilov, who has type 1 diabetes and a professional interest in diabetes, said diabetes was a big problem in Tasmania.
Dr Kilov said diabetes was under-diagnosed, with 500,000 to 700,000 Australians with type 2 diabetes not diagnosed, and the problem could be proportionally worse in Tasmania.
And he said of those diagnosed, many were ''under-treated'', meaning they could do more to manage their condition.
Dr Kilov said when it came to diabetes risk factors, the ''f-words'' were important - being fat, having a family history of diabetes and being aged over 40.
He said potential health problems from diabetes were serious - including kidney failure and the need for dialysis, blindness, heart attack, stroke and limb amputation.
''Our achievement targets [diagnosis and treatment] remain below the national average in Tasmania,'' Dr Kilov said.
''It's a big problem in Tasmania.''
Dr Kilov said having a healthy weight and an appropriate diet and exercising at least 30 minutes a day were important for managing diabetes.