June 17, 2024

1.3 It is estimated that a Billion People will be Living With this Disease by 2050, says Study : ScienceAlert

The number of people living with diabetes worldwide is on pace to more than double over the next three decades, for a total of 1.3 billion people by 2050. That’s one of the key findings from our a study of the global burden of diabetes recently published in The Lancet.

We analyzed and synthesized all available epidemiologic data on the burden of diabetes—defined as health deterioration from diabetes captured by the number of cases, disease severity, and deaths.

Our study included more than 27,000 data sources to produce estimates of diabetes prevalence, disability, and deaths for 204 countries and territories from 1990 to 2021. Using a modeling tool that takes sociodemographic and obesity factors into account, we projected diabetes prevalence out to 2050.

We also estimated the Diabetes contributes to disability and death attributable to specific risk factors related to obesity, diet, physical activity, environment or occupation, tobacco use, and alcohol use.

This analysis is part of a larger one Global Burden of Disease, Injuries and Risk Factors Studywhich has quantified health decline for hundreds of diseases, injuries and risk factors since 1990. Thousands of health experts and researchers around the world contribute to and use estimates from this study, which are updated continuously.

Our team estimated that cases of diabetes are expected to increase in all countries by 2050. In the most expected regions – including North Africa and the Middle East, and the Pacific island nations – there are countries where up to 1 in 5 people could be living with diabetes in 2050 if current trends continue. Among older adults in these regions, the prevalence of diabetes is expected to be even higher.

Although both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes characterized by high levels of blood sugar, also known as glucose, Type 2 a largely preventable disease caused by gradual insulin resistance and commonly diagnosed in adults. Type 1, on the other hand, is an autoimmune disease in which the body cannot produce insulin; it usually develops during childhood or adolescence.

It is estimated that the vast majority of new cases of diabetes in the next three decades will be Type 2. We expect the two main drivers to be aging populations and increases in obesity. In 2021, obesity was the most important risk factor for Type 2 diabetes, accounting for more than half of disability and death from the disease.

Why is it important

People with diabetes have a much higher risk of developing and dying from other major diseases, including ischemic heart disease and stroke, and from complications such as loss of vision and foot ulcers.

This increases the stress of diabetes on health care systems, requiring more comprehensive screening and management. However, a study found that less than 1 in 10 people with diabetes in low-income and middle-income countries access to comprehensive diabetes treatment.

Based on a wealth of research, the two main drivers of the expected rise in diabetes cases will be aging and obesity. As people age, so will their bodies ability to regulate changes in blood sugar levels.

In addition, studies show that obesity rates will continue to rise. No program has been shown yet sustainable and population reductions in obesity.

To reverse this trend in obesity rates, an approach that focuses on the behavioral and structural factors involved maintain a healthy diet and getting plenty of physical activity will be necessary.

What other research is being done

Although our study reports trends in diabetes and risk factors over time by age, sex, and geography, there are other factors that provide clues as to why diabetes disproportionately affects certain populations.

Research shows that there are many complex social and economic dynamics at play when it comes to trying to live a healthy lifestyle. Low income, low level of educationand living in urban areas all are associated with a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Studies also show that Type 2 diabetes disproportionately affects Indigenous populations around the world, largely due to colonization and the consequent disruption of their traditional livelihoods.

It is not necessarily the rapid increase in the number of people with diabetes that we project in our study. Understanding how these trends relate to how people live is the first step to changing the course of this disease in the years to come.

Lauryn StaffordFellow in Health Metrics Sciences, University of Washington and Liane OngPrincipal Research Scientist at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, University of Washington

This article is republished from The conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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