The rising rate of diabetes is a far cry from new news. As the Western diet of fast food spreads worldwide at a rapid pace, increased diabetes and obesity rates have been quick to follow.
However, a recent report from the International Diabetes Federation has shed new light on the increasing urgency of the issue:
“The number of people living with the disease is expected to soar to 552 million by 2030 -- equating to three new cases every 10 seconds -- up from 366 million in 2011, unless urgent action is taken.” the International Diabetes Federation told Reuters.
That’s 1 in every 10 adults worldwide that will be living with diabetes.
In light of this announcement, which coincides with National Diabetes Day, the need for better health and wellness education is evident – especially because the majority of diabetics have type 2, a preventable illness that is directly linked to poor diet and lack of exercise. If gone untreated, this disease could lead to a vast number of related illnesses including heart disease and stroke.
In addition to the crippling health effects of diabetes, people pay thousands of dollars every year for prescription drugs to help them live with the illness. Global sales of diabetes prescription medication reached $35 billion dollars in 2010 and are expected to rise to nearly $45 billion by 2015.
The role of health coaches and healthy living organization is now more important than ever. First Lady Michelle Obama’s campaign “Lets Move!” and the introduction of My Plate, the FDA’s new diagram of the recommended American diet, are playing an important role in encouraging people to eat healthily and stay active.
Health Coaches can also help by teaching people to prevent and manage diabetes through their food choices. It’s possible to control the effects of type 2 diabetes simply by replacing highly processed, sugary meals, and drinks with whole and natural foods.
It is also important to educate parents and children about the benefits of healthy eating. Teaching parents to shop for and cook healthy meals can hopefully reduce the appeal of fast food restaurants and encourage them to feed their family whole foods. As children carry these healthy habits into adulthood, this could help to reverse the expected increase of diabetes rates.
What are some of the things that you are doing or plan to do to fight diabetes in your community?