04/06/2016 03:48 pm ETLindsay HolmesDeputy Healthy Living Editor, The Huffington Post
Illness — in any form — can be devastating to a person and their family. And no one knows that better than people who experience diabetes.
In honor of World Health Day on April 7, the World Health Organization is bringing information about diabetes to the forefront of people’s minds. Most importantly, they’re also creating attention for the people who suffer from it.
Diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t produce or properly use insulin, a hormone in the body responsible for creating glucose. Glucose, in turn, is the body’s blood sugar, which is needed for immediate energy as well as storage of energy in the muscles and fat cells for later use. While Type 1 diabetes, which is usuallydiagnosed in childhood, is not yet preventable, Type 2 may be avoided with the right health behaviors.
Diabetes affects so many lives and can jeopardize a person’s health in multiple ways. Below are eight staggering statistics that will open your eyes to the impact of the disease:
The total number of people globally who have been diagnosed with diabetes, according to 2014 data. That’s 8.5 percent of the population. In 1980, only 108 million had the disease.
The number of people who died from a diabetes-related issue in 2012. High-glucose levels — a symptom of diabetes — caused an increase in cardiovascular and other diseases, which resulted in an additional 2.2 million deaths.
The percentage of U.S. adults who are overweight or obese, a health issue that can lead to the development of Type 2 diabetes, according to 2012 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The number of people in the U.S. who likely have diabetes and are undiagnosed.