The nation’s health has seen better days: 100 million people in the United States has diabetes or pre-diabetes, the precursor condition to this serious disease. This grim figure comes from the bi-annual National Diabetes Statistics Report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reported Yahoo.com.
“Consistent with previous trends, our research shows that diabetes cases are still increasing, although not as quickly as in previous years,” Ann Albright, director of the CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation, stated.
The 2015 version of the report revealed that, in that year alone, around 1.5 million cases of diabetes were diagnosed among those who were 18 years old and above. The 2015 report further stated that diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death in the United States, and that it was a “growing health problem.”
This year, the number swelled to 23.1 million cases of people who were diagnosed with the disease, while 7.2 million people remain undiagnosed. All in all, a total of 30.3 million people have diabetes, which is roughly 9.4 percent of the U.S. population. On the other hand, a staggering 84.1 million adults have pre-diabetes, with 23.1 million of them being aged 65 years or older, placing senior citizens as the group that is the most vulnerable to pre-diabetes.
Of the adults that were diagnosed with diabetes, five percent had type-1 diabetes while 95 percent had type-2 diabetes.
The key difference between type-1 and type-2 diabetes is that type-2 diabetes is largely preventable, and can most often be managed through diet, exercise, and medication. In fact, the CDC stated that pre-diabetic patients can manage to cut their risk of type-2 diabetes in half by making simple lifestyle changes.
Of course, that’s become more difficult in a day and age where nutrition-depleted food has all but become the norm. Sugar is often pointed out as the primary cause of type-2 diabetes, and though it’s a major factor, it isn’t the only one.
Foods loaded with fake sugars, synthetic oils, heavy metal-laden food dyes, and high-fructose corn syrup line our shelves and entice us with their alluring packaging. Their promises of convenience and, for the most part, decent taste make them even more obvious choices for our pantries and cupboards. Yet all of these foods and their ingredients do no favors for our health. They only contribute towards our bodies growing weaker and more vulnerable to chronic conditions like type-2 diabetes. (Related: Top 8 consumption habits that nearly guarantee chronic illness)
It’s no wonder then that type-2 diabetes and pre-diabetes are becoming increasingly common and slowly killing off our nation. And though pre-diabetes may not quite be there yet, people who suffer from this condition still have blood sugar levels that are way above the norm. What’s more is that pre-diabetes has been linked to the start of kidney, heart, and blood vessel damage. So regardless of whether you’re already a diabetic or well on your way to becoming one, your body is suffering.
Speaking of the report, CDC Director Brenda Fitzgerald commented: “Although these findings reveal awareness in diabetes management and prevention, there are still too many Americans with diabetes and pre-diabetes. Now, more than ever, we must step up our efforts to reduce the burden of this serious disease.”
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