Diabesity and the Rising Obesity Epidemic

Obesity and diabetes are both continuing to rise at an alarming rate. Given the relationship between the two problems, researchers have coined a new word – diabesity, or diabetes occurring in the context of obesity. It is also commonly referred to as obesity-dependent diabetes.

Concern is mounting about the health and economic impacts of diabesity. One recent review examined the latest research on the epidemiological, economic, and health effects of the problem. The review cited alarming statistics; for example, the the current world prevalence of diabetes is 284 million people, or 6.4 percent, and this is likely to increase to 439 million individuals (7.7 percent) by 2030.

Hive Health Media reports:

“What’s the economic burden of obesity and diabetes? ... [The] review cites numbers as high as $376 billion in 2010 for diabetes which is projected to rise to $376 billion in 2030. In the United States, diabetes consumes 14 percent of healthcare expenditures while obesity itself consumes 5.7 percent. When the costs of being overweight are added to obesity, the costs rise to 9.1 percent of USA’s total healthcare expenditure.”

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