New Report Shows World Diabetes Rate Increasing

Tuesday, 05 July 2011

United States has one of the highest rates of diabetes in study

A recently published CNN Health blog post reports that diabetes rates worldwide have doubled in the last thirty years. The article sites a new study from the Lancet medical journal, which studied 2.7 million adults worldwide. The U.S. had some of the highest glucose levels and one of the overall highest rates of diabetes among high income countries worldwide.

According to the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, an estimated 23.6 million people in the United States - 7.8 percent of the population - have diabetes. Of those, 17.9 million have been diagnosed, and 5.7 million have not yet been diagnosed. In 2007, about 1.6 million people ages 20 or older were diagnosed with diabetes.

Diabetes is associated with long-term complications that affect almost every part of the body. The disease often leads to blindness, heart and blood vessel disease, stroke, kidney failure, amputations, and nerve damage. Uncontrolled diabetes can complicate pregnancy, and birth defects are more common in babies born to women with diabetes.

Research studies have found that moderate weight loss and exercise can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes among adults at high-risk for diabetes. For both type 1 and 2 diabetes, an early diagnosis is key to managing the illness and finding a treatment plan. Make sure and talk to your doctor about regular glucose screenings as part of your annual checkup. Increased risk factors for the disease include:

• Being overweight or obese.
• Having a parent, brother, or sister with diabetes.
• Being African American, American Indian, Asian American, Pacific Islander, or of Hispanic American/Latino heritage.
• Having a prior history of gestational diabetes or birth of at least one baby weighing more than 9 pounds.
• Having high blood pressure measuring 140/90 or higher.
• Having abnormal cholesterol where HDL ("good") cholesterol is 35 or lower, or triglyceride level is 250 or higher.
• Being physically inactive - exercising fewer than three times a week.
Find out more about diabetes risks and prevention at For information on living a healthy lifestyle, including fitness and nutrition tips, visit

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CNN Health, National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse


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