Australian of the Year presents ‘Blinded by Sugar’ to Western Sydney

2020 Australian of the Year, eye surgeon James Muecke, is presenting to Western Sydney next week. Photo by Rohan Thomson/Getty Images

2020 Australian of the Year Dr James Muecke is urging the community to start taking their sugar intake seriously.

Western Sydney Diabetes is inviting the community to hear from Dr Muecke about the impact sugar is having on our health in his confronting presentation, Blinded By Sugar.

As an ophthalmologist, Dr Muecke was concerned about the impact of diabetic retinopathy he was treating in his surgery and has dedicated his year in office to increasing awareness of the impact diet and diabetes has on health.

In the 25-minute presentation, he discusses why Type 2 diabetes is a growing worldwide epidemic and explores a number of strategies to curb the toxic impact of sugar on our health and on our world.

“People are often not aware of how it can potentially impact them or their families, so it’s important to raise awareness of how our modern diet plays a really critical role in this,” Dr Muecke said.

“People are also not fully aware of how toxic sugar is or of the refined carbohydrates’ role in ultra-processed food. It’s really important for people to know what they’re putting in their mouths is making them sicker and fatter.”

It featuresthe story of one of his patients, Neil Hansell, who woke one morning blind in both eyes due to neglect of his diabetes.

To help deliver his message, Dr Muecke came up with the ‘Five A’s of Sugar Toxicity’: addiction, alleviation, accessibility, addition and advertising.

“There’s just this extraordinary, overwhelming flood of sugar in our lives that’s a toxin and it’s actually destroying our bodies,” he said.

Western Sydney Diabetes is a collaborative initiative led by Western Sydney Local Health District and Western Sydney Primary Health Network (WentWest) to address the Western Sydney diabetes hotspot.

Details: 6.30pm, Tuesday December 8, 2020, followed by an interactive Q&A session.

Free registration:

You will then receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Inquiries: Beverly Bugarin,

Media inquiries: eEngagement and Education Manager, Heloise Tolar, or 0417 872 245