A third of world's diabetics in India, China

A third of world's diabetics in India, China

Bitter data

A third of world's diabetics in India, China

According to the study by Harvard and World Health Organisation (WHO), the largest of its kind for diabetes, 70 per cent of the rise in worldwide diabetic cases was due to population growth and ageing, with the other 30 per cent due to higher prevalence.

Between 1980 and 2008, the number of adults with diabetes rose from 153 million to 347 million. Of this number, 138 million live in China and India and another 36 million in the US and Russia, according to the study carried out by an international collaboration of researchers, led by Profess­or Majid  Ezzati from Imperial College London and co-led by Goodarz Danaei from the Ha­rvard School of Public He­alth, in collaboration with the WHO.

“Our study has shown that diabetes is becoming more common almost everywhere in the world, in contrast to blood pressure and cholesterol, which have both fallen in many regions.

“Diabetes is much harder to prevent and treat than these other conditions,” Ezzati said, adding diabetes is one of the biggest causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide.

The proportion of adults with diabetes rose to 9.8 per cent of men and 9.2 per cent of women in 2008, compared with 8.3 per cent of men and 7.5 per cent of women in 1980.

The estimated number of 347 million diabetics was considerably higher than a previous study in 2009 which put the number worldwide at 285 million.

The research, published in the journal “Lancet”, reveals that the prevalence of diab­etes has risen or at best remained unchanged in virtually every part of the world over the last three decades.

The study included blood sugar measurements from 2.7 million participants aged 25 years or more across the wo­r­ld and used advanced statistical methods for analysing data.