C.J. Miles, MBAHCM, MSA
Research Analyst, AMAC Foundation
“Affecting all age groups and all aspects of a person’s life, Diabetes is a major public health issue worldwide, requiring lifelong behavioral and lifestyle changes and support” (Lawrence, Conrad, & Moore, 2012, p. 24). In general, Diabetes is considered an overall term for “different conditions that all display an impairment of the body’s ability to metabolize glucose” (Steven, 2014, p. 169). Even though there are multiple types of Diabetes (mainly Type 1, Type 2 and Gestational) Type 2 is the most predominant since over 90% of diabetics have Type 2 Diabetes (Lawrence et al., 2012; World Health Organization [WHO], 2013). The increased prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes is a major concern all over the world and this rise in diagnoses is theorized to be a result of the growing epidemic of obesity across the world (Kahn, Cooper, & Del Prato, 2014; Lau, 2010; Steven, 2014). Because of this relationship, the term “Diabesity” has been coined, which is the combined epidemic of Diabetes and obesity. Patients with Diabesity have a “seven-fold increase in the risk of overall mortality compared with healthy individuals” (Lau, 2010, p. S-24).
“Obesity as a risk factor for Diabetes is independent of age, race and physical activity. While epidemiologists generally hesitate to attribute causality, the link between obesity and Diabetes is very likely causal, and as such it is also likely that preventing obesity would prevent a large number of Diabetes cases” (Adler, 2002, p. S-11).Weight, body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference (including waist-to-hip ratio) have all been identified as independent risk factors for developing Type 2 Diabetes (Lau, 2010; Siram, Yanagisawa, & Skamagas, 2010). In approximately 90% of patients in Western countries, weight gain is closely linked to Type 2 Diabetes (Adler, 2002; Lau, 2010). Furthermore, in a United States epidemiological study with more than 100,000 individuals, those with a BMI over 25 compared with those with a BMI of less than 22, had a 30-40 times increased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. Therefore, it is theorized that since being overweight increases the risk of Diabetes, then reducing weight should decrease the risk of getting Type 2 Diabetes (Adler, 2002).
The following paper discusses Type 2 Diabetes in detail, including what happens to the body when someone has the disease. The increasing prevalence of Diabetes is also reviewed in addition to the comorbidity issues that diabetes need to be aware of. With the high occurrences of Diabesity and extreme comorbidity issues, many studies will be examined showing how reducing weight is a viable solution to preventing, controlling, and reversing both Type 2 Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes. Finally, there will be a treatment analysis discussed for both practitioners and patients.