It is estimated that up to three million people die from the disease every year, and over a quarter of a billion people are affected.
Both figures are likely to be very short of the mark.
World Diabetes Day is on 14 November and all over the planet events are taking place to draw attention to the threat of what is described as an epidemic that is out of control.
Already it kills more people than HIV/Aids and the prognosis is grim.
India is the nation with most diabetics. More + video...