Diabetes currently affects one in 10 U.S. adults. But this number is expected to grow exponentially – to one in three U.S. adults – in the next 40 years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns. The CDC based its projection on the number of obese Americans, as well as the growing number of elderly and minority groups, who tend to be more susceptible to developing diabetes.
In addition, the number of diabetes hospitalizations is up by 66 percent since 1993, reports researchers from the University of Michigan Health System. Although the numbers were up for all ages and sexes, the rate of hospitalization was highest among young women. Researchers believe that the growing number of obese young women, in addition to the lower likelihood that women will receive needed preventive care, put women at increased vulnerability for diabetes.
In most cases, diabetes is a preventable illness. Through living a healthy lifestyle, which means eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise, American’s can cut their risk dramatically.
“Successful programs to improve lifestyle choices on healthy eating and physical activity must be made more widely available, because the stakes are too high and the personal toll too devastating to fail,” said Ann Albright, director of CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation.