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Monday, August 4, 2014

Type 2 Diabetes Facts and Figures

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood glucose resulting from defects in
insulin production, insulin action, or both. Diabetes can lead to serious complications and
premature death, but people with diabetes can take steps to control the disease and lower the risk
of complications.

SOURCE: National Diabetes Education Program, Snapshot of Diabetes, Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,

Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of the disease. In type 2 diabetes, either your body
does not produce enough insulin or the cells ignore the insulin. This is called insulin resistance.
Insulin is necessary for the body to be able to use glucose for energy. When you eat food, the
body breaks down all of the sugars and starches into glucose, which is the basic fuel for the cells
in the body. Insulin takes the sugar from the blood into the cells. When glucose builds up in the blood instead of going into cell, it can cause two problems:

• Right away, your cells may be starved for energy.
• Over time, high blood glucose levels may hurt your eyes, kidneys, nerves or heart.
Some groups have a higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes than others. Type 2 diabetes is
more common in African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asian Americans/Pacific
Islanders, as well as the aged population.

SOURCE: American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Basics – Facts About Type 2, Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,

Current Facts & Figures

• 25.8 million Americans have diabetes – 8.3% of the U.S. population. Of these, 7 million
do not know they have the disease.
• 215,000 Americans younger than 20 have been diagnosed with diabetes. Most cases of
diabetes among children and adolescents are type 1.
• The number of people diagnosed with diabetes has risen from 1.5 million in 1958 to 18.8
million in 2010, an increase of epidemic proportions.
• It is estimated that 79 million adults aged 20 and older have pre-diabetes. Pre-diabetes is
a condition where blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be
called diabetes. Studies have shown that by losing weight and increasing physical activity
people can prevent or delay pre-diabetes from progressing to diabetes.
• Type 1 (previously called insulin-dependent or juvenile-onset) diabetes accounts for
approximately 5% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes in adults.
Type 2 (previously called non-insulin-dependent or adult-onset) diabetes accounts for
90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes in adults. Type 2 diabetes is increasingly
being diagnosed in children and adolescents.
• Gestational diabetes occurs in 2% to 10% of pregnancies. Women who have had
gestational diabetes have a 35% to 60% chance of developing diabetes, most type 2, in
the next 10-20 years.
• Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death listed on U.S. death certificates.
• Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among people with diabetes – about
68% die of heart disease or stroke.
• Total health care and related costs for the treatment of diabetes run about $174 billion
SOURCE: National Diabetes Education Program, Snapshot of Diabetes, Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,

Warning Signs & Symptoms

Early detection and treatment of diabetes can decrease the risk of developing the complications
of diabetes. The following symptoms of diabetes are typical. However, some people with type 2
diabetes have symptoms so mild that they go unnoticed.
Common symptoms of diabetes:
• Urinating often
• Feeling very thirsty
• Feeling very hungry – even though you are eating
• Extreme fatigue
• Blurry vision
• Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
• Weight loss – even though you are eating more (type 1)
• Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet (type 2)
SOURCE: American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Basics – Symptoms, Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,


Heart disease and stroke

• Adults with diabetes have heart disease death rates about 2 to 4 times higher than adults
without diabetes.
• The risk for stroke is 2 to 4 times higher among people with diabetes.
High blood pressure
• In 2005-2008, of adults aged 20 years or older with self-reported diabetes, 67% had blood
pressure greater than or equal to 140/90 mmHg or used prescription medications for


• Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20-74 years.
• In 2005-2008, 4.2 million (28.5%) people with diabetes aged 40 years or older had
diabetic retinopathy, and of these, almost 0.7 million (4.4% of those with diabetes) had
advanced diabetic retinopathy that could lead to severe vision loss.

Kidney disease

• Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, accounting for 44% of new cases in 2008.
• In 2008, 48, 374 people with diabetes began treatment for end-stage kidney disease in the
United States.
• In 2008, a total of 202, 290 people with end-stage kidney disease due to diabetes were
living on chronic dialysis or with a kidney transplant in the United States.
Nervous system disease (Neuropathy)

• About 60% to 70% of people with diabetes have mild to severe forms of nervous system

• More than 60% of nontraumatic lower-limb amputations occur in people with diabetes.
• In 2006, about 65,700 nontraumatic lower-limb amputations were performed in people
with diabetes.

SOURCE: American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Basics –Statistic, Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,

Diabetes Prevention

Research studies have found that moderate weight loss and exercise can prevent or delay type 2
diabetes among adults at high-risk of diabetes. The Diabetes Prevent Program (DPP), a major
federally funded study of 3,234 people at high risk for diabetes, showed that people can delay
and possibly prevent the disease by losing a small amount of weight (5% to 7% of total body
weight) through 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days a week and healthier eating.

Anyone aged 45 years or older should consider getting tested for diabetes, especially if you are
overweight. If you are younger than 45, but are overweight and have one or more of the
additional risk factors (see below), you should consider getting tested.

What are the risk factors which increase the likelihood of developing diabetes?
• Being overweight or obese.
• Having a parent, brother, or sister with diabetes.
• Being African American, American Indian, Asian American, Pacific Islander, or
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.

SOURCE: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Diabetes Home – Diabetes & Me, Prevent Diabetes. Retrieved on February 18, 2014, from,

For More Information

• American Diabetes Association

• National Diabetes Educational Program

• Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

• National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse

• Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

Eric Dempsey
Master Sergeant, U.S. Army Retired
NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Weight Loss Specialist
Graduate Student In Exercise Science At Cal U.
Dempseys Resolution Fitness

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