Diabetes Increasing at an Alarming Rate Worldwide
Monday, November 14, 2011, World Diabetes Day. Forecasts from the International Diabetes Federation appear grim. Their latest projection is that 1 in 10 adults will contract diabetes by 2030. The wide-ranging effect on global economies will be devastating unless action is taken to stem the tide of the epidemic which will not only hinder economic growth in the world's fastest-growing economies as it kills people in their most productive years. But it will also strain already burdened health care systems to their breaking points.
The number of people living with diabetes is expected to rise to 552 million by 2030. That is the equivalent of three new cases every 10 seconds. Currently, up to 366 million people have been ravaged with the disease in 2011, that translates to 1 in 13 adults. However, the International Diabetes Federation, representing more than 200 national diabetes associations worldwide in a report estimated that as many as 183 million people have the disease and don't know it.
Though the vast majority of diabetics have Type 2, which is contracted as people age and is linked to sedentary lifestyle and high calorie, high carbohydrate diets, globalization has spread Western lifestyles to the developing world. Along with an increased standard of living, they have contracted our ills. China, at the top of the list, now has 90 million diabetics, and those between the ages of 40 and 59 have the highest proportionate number of diagnoses.
It is the complications related to diabetes which are deadly: heart disease, stroke, damage to kidneys and nerves, blindness and runaway infections which can result in the loss of a limb. Indeed, worldwide deaths from the disease are now running at 4.6 million a year. According to the World Health Organization, eighty percent of deaths from the disease and its complications occur in developing countries. By 2030, the group anticipates the death-rate will be double that figure.Continued on the next page