According to a new report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),
more than 100 million American adults live with diabetes or prediabetes. The
report reveals that in 2015, 30.3 million Americans – or 9.4% of the American
population live with diabetes. Another 84.1 million people have prediabetes, a
condition that, if left untreated, often leads to type 2 diabetes within five
The report reaffirms that the rate of new diabetes diagnoses remains steady. However, the
disease continues to be a growing health issue: diabetes was the seventh
leading cause of death in the United States in 2015. The report also includes
county-level data for the first time and shows that some areas of the country
carry a huge burden of diabetes than others.
“While these results show progress in the management and prevention of diabetes, there
are still a lot of Americans with diabetes and pre-diabetes,” said CDC
Director Brenda Fitzgerald, M.D. “More than a third of American adults are
pre-diabetic and most do not know. Presently more than ever, we need to step up
efforts to reduce the burden of this serious disease. ”
Diabetes is a serious disease but the good news is that it can be controlled by physical activity,
healthy eating and proper use of insulin and other medicines to control blood
sugar. People with diabetes have an increased risk of serious complications of
health, including premature death, vision loss, heart disease, stroke, kidney
failure, and amputation of toes, feet, or legs.
The national diabetes statistics report, published approximately every two years, provides
information on the prevalence and incidence of diabetes, prediabetes, and risk
factors for complications, acute and long-term complications, mortality and
costs in the United States.
Key findings of the national diabetes statistics report
The report states that:
- In 2015, about 1.5 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed in people aged 18
years and over.
- Almost one in four adults living with diabetes – 7.2 million Americans – did not know
that they were suffering from this disease. Only 11.6% of adults with
prediabetes knew they had them.
- Diagnosed diabetes rates have increased with age. Adults from 18 to 44 years of age, 4%
had diabetes. 17% of people aged 45-64 had diabetes. And 65 years or more, 25%
The rate at which diabetes is diagnosed were higher among American Indians / Alaska Natives
(15.1%), non-Hispanic blacks (12.7%) and Hispanics (12.1%), compared to Asian
(8.0%) and non-Hispanic white (7.4%).
Some other differences are listed below:
- Prevalence of diabetes significantly differed from the level of education. Among American
adults who did not complete high school, 12.6% had diabetes. Among those that
have higher education, 9.5% had diabetes; and among those with more than a high
school diploma, 7.2% had diabetes.
- More men (36.6%) had pre-diabetes than women (29.3%). The rates were similar for
women and men, by racial/ethnic or educational level.
- The southern and US Appalachian showed the highest rate of diagnosed diabetes and
new cases of diabetes.
“In line with past trends, research has shown that diabetes cases continue to grow,
but not as fast as in previous years,” said Ann Albright, Ph.D., R.D.,
director of CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation. “Diabetes is a factor
that contributes to so many other serious health problems. In the fight against
diabetes, other health problems such as heart disease, stroke, nerve and kidney
disease, and loss of vision are limited.”
CDC partnerships for the prevention of diabetes
In order to reduce the impact of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, the CDC has established
the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP), which provides a
framework for preventing type 2 diabetes efforts in the United States.
According to the landmark Diabetes Prevention Program research findings funded by the
National Institute of Health (NIH), the National DPP includes an
evidence-based, year long, behavior change program which is designed to enhance
eating habits and increase physical activity to lose a modest amount of weight
and significantly reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Raise awareness and offer help for people with prediabetes to know where they belong
and prevent type 2 diabetes, the CDC, the American Diabetes Association (ADA)
and the American Medical Association (AMA), in collaboration with the Ad
Council, launched the first national public service advertising (PSA) campaign
on prediabetes. These hilarious PSAs in English and Spanish encourage people to
make a short online test at DoIHavePrediabetes.org know their risks.
In order to prevent serious and expensive complications of diabetes, states work with CDC
to improve access to diabetes self-management education (DSME), emphasizing the
DSME programs to comply with national quality standards. In addition, CDC and
NIH’s Natural Experiments for Translation in Diabetes (NEXT-D) study evaluated
existing data to determine whether diabetes prevention and control
interventions and policies are effective under real-life conditions.