Diabetes Increases Dramatically

On June 24, 2008, the Centers for Disease Control released prevalence data for diabetes in the U.S.  Nearly 24 million people now have diabetes, up three percent over just two years.  This is eight percent of the population.  The vast majority of cases are of type 2 diabetes, not the type 1 usually diagnosed in childhood.

Another 57 million people have pre-diabetes, a condition that can turn into full-blown diabetes over time.  The two types of pre-diabetes are “impaired fasting glucose” and “impaired glucose tolerance.”

The CDC broke down diabetes prevalence for various age groups.  Twenty-three percent of people over 60 have diabetes.  Eleven percent of all adults have diabetes.

The 24 million figure includes six million who have diabetes but have not yet been diagnosed.

I expect to see even more diabetes cases in the future as our overweight population ages.

Risk factors for the development of type 2 diabetes include aging and genetic heritage.  You can’t do anything about those.  But two other major risk factors are under your control: habitual inactivity and excessive body fat.

If you don’t want to be one of these statistics, now you know what you need to do.

Steve Parker, M.D.

Additional information:

WebMD Diabetes Guide

American Diabetes Association

The Prevention or Delay of Type 2 Diabetes

Does Weight Loss Prevent Type 2 Diabetes?

Mediterranean Diet Reduces Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

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