CDC Predicts Sharp Increase in Diabetes Without Diet, Exercise Modifications
One-third of U.S. children born in 2000 and an even greater percentage of minorities will develop diabetes in their lifetimes without improvements in diet and exercise, according to a study presented by the CDC at an American Diabetes Association meeting in New Orleans, USA Today reports (Manning, USA Today, 6/16). The prediction, which is about three times greater than the ADA's current estimate, is based on data from the annual National Health Interview Survey of 360,000 people surveyed between 1984 and 2000, Census Bureau data and a previous study of diabetes as a cause of death. Under the new projection, between 45 million and 50 million U.S. residents could have diabetes by 2050. Currently, 17 million U.S. residents -- about 6% of the population -- have the disease. In the past decade, the number of diagnosed cases of diabetes has risen by nearly 50% (McConnaughey, AP/Houston Chronicle, 6/14). Because of a combination of genetic predisposition and higher obesity rates, minorities have a greater risk of developing diabetes than whites; 53% of Hispanic women, 45% of Hispanic men, 49% of black women and 40% of black men are expected to develop the disease, compared with 31% of white women and 27% of white men. The risk of developing diabetes is greater for women, who have a 39% likelihood of developing the disease, than for men, who have a 33% chance, because women have a higher life expectancy rate and therefore have more time to develop the disease. Judith Fradkin of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases said, "We know we can prevent" diabetes through weight loss and exercise, but she added, "[I]t's a tough prescription for physicians to write" (USA Today, 6/16). CBS' "Evening News" on Saturday reported on the study. The segment includes comments from CDC Director Julie Gerberding and Diabetes Amputation Prevention Foundation's Dr. Bill Releford (Assuras, "Evening News," CBS, 6/14). The complete segment is available in RealPlayer online.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.