The CDC has announced worrisome statistics regarding diabetes. In 2012, 9 percent of American adults had the disease, which increases the risk of cardiovascular complications such as kidney failure, stroke or heart disease and premature death.

An estimated 29 million of us now have diabetes, although at least one in four have not been diagnosed with it. An additional 86 million are at risk of developing diabetes. That means one in three adults are currently considered pre-diabetic.

Children are not immune. Increasingly, type 2 diabetes is being diagnosed among adolescents and even younger children. Experts advise that increasing physical activity and decreasing excess weight can protect some of those at risk from eventually developing this devastating metabolic disorder.  

In The People’s Pharmacy perspective, obesity and diabetes seem to be twin epidemics that public health experts are having difficulty controlling. It is not possible to untangle which is driving the other, or whether they are reinforcing each other. Several of the experts we have talked with over the past few years suggest that we need to revamp the standard American diet (and put more active play into our days) if we want to reverse these trends. You may be interested in our conversations with Robert Lustig, Mark Hyman or William Polonsky and Richard Bernstein. We also offer our Guide to Managing Diabetes for further information.

Get The Graedons' Favorite Home Remedies Health Guide for FREE

Join our daily email newsletter with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies AND you'll get a copy of our brand new full-length health guide — for FREE!

  1. CP

    I agree with the latter part of this article. I am living proof; my mother is not.
    My mother has had issues with her weight for decades and was diagnosed with diabetes in 1982 at the age of 50 y.o. My memories recall she had sit-down jobs for years and never exercised. She would come home from work, prepare dinner & sit down to watch TV in the evening. She has since developed high blood pressure and heart disease, had quadruple by-pass surgery and on her 3rd pacemaker and still overweight at close to 200 lbs. at 4’10”. She is thankfully still living independently and drives. However, she takes multiple medications to help keep her going.
    When I turned 55, I had an epiphany one day when I saw myself in my mother. I was just under 5′ tall & 143 lbs. I made a New Year’s resolution to at least try to lose the excess weight. I changed my eating habits, did simple exercises about an hour 5 days a week (at home in A.M. before work). After one year, I lost 33 lbs. I am now almost 61 y.o., 110 lbs. & still do my simple exercises about an hour for 5 days a week, have kept off the weight and have no diabetes or heart disease!

  2. CAK

    With the majority of MDs and dietitians continuing to sing the decades-old song of low-fat to their clients, I don’t know how we’re ever going to get this ship turned around. How indeed can we get the focus to be: SUGAR is the villain. And: It’s not the AMOUNT of fat, it’s the KIND of fat.
    I’d love to see more health professionals tuning in to the likes of the references you list above.
    And thanks, Terry and Joe, for your continued work on this.

  3. LD

    And don’t forget the surge of cholesterol medications flooding every age and sector of the population! Statins have been linked to increased risk of diabetes!

  4. cara

    The cdc has no idea how many people have diabetes. How can they if people haven’t been diagnosed? The figures are just guesses. They mean nothing. Another thing the cdc never mentions is the fact that the blood fasting rate that determines if a person has diabetes has changed down through the years. Forty years ago it was much higher. Something like 130. Now it’s at 90. Some doctors even say it should be 80. Because the figure that determines if a person has diabetes has gone down, of course there are more people with diabetes than there were years ago.

What Do You Think?

We invite you to share your thoughts with others, but remember that our comment section is a public forum. Please do not use your full first and last name if you want to keep details of your medical history anonymous. A first name and last initial or a pseudonym is acceptable. Advice from other commenters on this website is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. Stopping medication suddenly could result in serious harm. We expect comments to be civil in tone and language. By commenting, you agree to abide by our commenting policy and website terms & conditions. Comments that do not follow these policies will not be posted. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Your cart

Shipping and discount codes are added at checkout.