According to recent studies, it is estimated that the number of people with type 2 diabetes will double globally by 2050. These data were reported in an article in the prestigious journal The Lancet. However, it is important to note that although this chronic disease affects the world’s population in general, there are regions with a greater predisposition to suffer from it.
Increase in number of people with diabetes predicted
Currently, there are 529 million people suffering from diabetes, according to estimates based on data from the Global Burden of Disease. This number is expected to rise to 1.3 billion in the next 30 years.
An article published in a scientific journal uses information collected by the Global Burden of Disease to examine the prevalence, morbidity and mortality associated with this disease in 204 countries. The study is based on data collected between 1990 and 2021. In 2021, approximately 529 million people worldwide had diabetes, representing approximately 6.1% of the world’s population.
It is estimated that by 2050, the prevalence of the disease will exceed 10% in more than 43% of the countries studied. This increase will be particularly notable in Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean, where a significant increase in the number of people affected is expected. In particular, the proportion of diabetics in Africa and the Middle East is expected to increase from 9.9% today to 16.8% in 2050, while in Latin America and the Caribbean it is projected to rise to 11.3%.
Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes. It accounts for 96% of cases worldwide. This type of diabetes can develop due to different causes:
- Poor diet.
- High body mass index.
- Lack of adequate care at an older age.
According to a 2021 study, more than 50% of affected individuals had a body mass index (BMI) that was too high.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the cells of the pancreas, which reduces insulin production.
Hypercaloric and refined foods are largely responsible for diabetes, although it is important to note that low-income populations are particularly exposed to this health problem. According to Stephen Lawrence of the University of Warwick in the UK, leading a sedentary life for 10 years and consuming refined carbohydrates can lead to type 2 diabetes.
While many people can undergo treatment or adjust their diets and lifestyles, others do not have that possibility. Inequality and lack of resources play a major role in both the morbidity and also the mortality rate associated with diabetes.
According to the most recent statistics, in low- and middle-income countries, only 10% of diabetics receive adequate treatment. According to scientists, lifting people out of poverty and teaching them a new quality of life would be a long-term solution. A good idea might be for governments to implement regulations in the food industry, in order to favor people with diabetes. It would be a similar strategy, for example, to what they did with tobacco.