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Can the massive increase in type 2 diabetes be stopped?
Type 2 diabetes is a common disease today. Doctors and health authorities have long been trying to stop the spread of this disease. However, researchers have now found that global rates of the disease will continue to increase massively as people become overweight. Approximately one in eight people will suffer from type 2 diabetes by 2045.
In their latest study, University College London scientists found that global rates of type 2 diabetes would increase massively by 2045. This will have a serious impact on health systems. The doctors present the results of their current study at the European Congress on Obesity in Vienna.
Obesity needs to be tackled
One in eight people in the world will have type 2 diabetes by 2045, if obesity continues to increase at the current rate, experts say. Global rates for the disease will increase from nine percent to 14 percent. This will have serious consequences for health systems. For this reason, the scientists emphasize that every effort should be made to combat increasing obesity.
14 percent of the world's population is obese
Last year, 14 percent of the world's population was obese and nine percent of people had type 2 diabetes. By 2045, however, 22 percent will be obese, the scientists speculated. In addition, 14 percent of people will suffer from type 2 diabetes. The impact of the growing numbers of these diseases is extremely serious for health systems in every country. Diabetes UK estimates that the NHS already spends £ 14 billion a year on the disease, which is about 10 percent of its budget. People with diabetes need special medical monitoring, treatment, and care for the serious potential complications, which may include amputations and blindness, the scientists are quoted by the Guardian newspaper.
Program to speed up fight against diabetes
To prevent type 2 diabetes rates from rising by over ten percent, obesity must be reduced by about a quarter. There is already a program to accelerate the global fight against diabetes, the researchers say. This program started in 2014 in eight cities. These include: Copenhagen, Rome, Houston, Johannesburg, Vancouver, Mexico City, Tianjin and Shanghai. There are already seven other cities participating in the program: Beijing, Buenos Aires, Hangzhou, Koriyama, Leicester, Mérida and Xiamen.
Healthcare costs will increase enormously
The high number of illnesses underscores the harrowing challenge that people around the world will have to face in the future when it comes to the number of people who are overweight, have type 2 diabetes or both, say the study authors. In addition to the medical challenges these people face, the cost of countries' health systems will increase enormously.
Obesity is a challenge for society
The global prevalence of obesity and diabetes is expected to increase dramatically if obesity prevention is not significantly increased. The development of effective global programs to reduce obesity offers the best way to sustainably slow or stabilize the prevalence of diabetes, the doctors explain. The first step must be to recognize the challenge that obesity poses to today's society.
55 percent of people in the United States will soon be obese?
The researchers have already calculated the likely increase in obesity for individual countries. If current trends continue in the U.S., obesity will increase from 39 percent in 2017 to 55 percent in 2045. In addition, the rate of diabetes will increase from 14 percent to 18 percent. To keep the rate of diabetes in the United States stable between 2017 and 2045, obesity would have to be reduced from 38 percent to 28 percent today.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach
In the UK, current trends predict that obesity will increase from 32 percent today to 48 percent in 2045, while diabetes rates will increase from 10.2 percent to 12.6 percent, an increase of 28 percent . To stabilize the UK diabetes rate at ten percent, the prevalence of obesity would need to be reduced from 32 percent to 24 percent. Each country differs due to the unique genetic, social and ecological conditions. This is why there is no one-size-fits-all approach that works for all countries, the scientists explain. For this reason, individual countries have to work on the best strategy for them. The real flood of diabetes in the future can still be averted. However, this would require aggressive and coordinated measures to reduce obesity. (as)