I often wonder what it would be like to have diabetes in a different western industrialized country — one that has a sensible, functioning health care system, for example. Or just someplace smaller, and greener.

This being St. Patrick's Day, I thought I'd look up Ireland. Here are a some interesting wee tidbits that Google coughed up:

shamrock icon The website of the big national advocacy organization, The Diabetes Federation of Ireland, has much the same content that most of ours do. To wit: they don't recommend "diabetic foods" either.

shamrock iconThe Federation's website is a production of Novo Nordisk, however — which is not well disclosed.  I only noticed because I happened upon the tiny copyright info at the very bottom of the home page. Bedad! (that's Irish for surprise).

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  The Federation has a Facebook page, but it has only 100+ fans to date. Wisha! (more Irish for surprise).

 

shamrock icon A recent study of primary care physicians concludes: "Delivery of diabetes care in Ireland remains largely unstructured."

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  Things appear to be especially bad in Northern Ireland.

 

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  Patients over there are just as confused/frustrated about carb-counting as we are.

 

shamrock icon A search on "Diabetes and alcohol Ireland" brings up a very measured approach. (I'm going PC and omitting expression of surprise here).

shamrock icon It's the same all over: a new report shows that Ireland is "facing a dramatic rise" in both type 2 and type 1 diabetes (expected to rise 33% by 2015). Here I am actually not surprised.

shamrock icon Hoping for a pot of gold for diabetics? I think not. What do you expect from the country that brought you Corned Beef and Cabbage?

shamrock icon But they do good research — for example, Trinity College Dublin just came out with some helpful findings about Type 2 diabetes in young adults.

shamrock icon And for Type 1's, they've got the Paradigm Veo (and we don't!) That's Medtronic's new combo insulin pump/CGM system can automatically suspend insulin delivery when your BG level dips, protecting you from severe hypoglycemia. (Anybody know the Irish for 'When are we getting that?!')

 

 

♣ Here at home, you can visit a real Irish Lassie who has diabetes on her D-blogDia duit, Sheila!

→ Wait, Sheila, you live in Guatemala? You might not know what you're missing, Lassie. (Or do you?)

 

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This content is created for Diabetes Mine, a consumer health blog focused on the diabetes community. The content is not medically reviewed and doesn't adhere to Healthline's editorial guidelines. For more information about Healthline's partnership with Diabetes Mine, please click here.