A new report by the World Health Organization (WHO) reveals a fourfold increase in global diabetes cases in the last 36 years. There are now 422 million adults living with diabetes globally. This is an increase from 108 million people in 1980. The majority of these people are living in poorer, low-resource countries. WHO is calling for healthier diets in order to curb these increasing numbers.
The largest increase is in Type 2 diabetes cases, which is linked to obesity and lack of physical activity. More than one in three people in the world are overweight, and more than one in 10 are obese, according to WHO. Diabetes can lead to stroke, heart attack, blindness, kidney failure, and lower limb amputation. People with disabilities may be particularly vulnerable to health issues such as obesity and diabetes, particularly those who struggle with mental health and mobility issues. NACCHO’s health and disability program provides tools and resources to help local health departments support people with disabilities in their communities and include them in programming.