Credit: ABC News

New statistics show one in five people in Guam have diabetes and up to 50 per cent of Pacific islanders have the disease.

Health authorities confirm thousands of Pacific islanders have been diagnosed with type 2 or non-insulin dependent diabetes, and there are thousands more who are unaware they have the condition.

Shawn Gumataotao, spokesman for the governor of Guam in a conversation with Radio Australia's Pacific Beat program said, it is a health issue that is going to take a huge toll of the nation's health system.

We have to do something and do something quickly, said Mr Gumataotao.

We cannot look at it alone in its own state. It contributes to a lot of other related diseases, like heart disease, so as a community we continue to try and combat it.