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Diabetes in Canada – Some Facts

Recent figures revealed by Statistics Canada indicate that the prevalence of diabetes is on the rise across the nation. Many factors have contributed to this alarming situation such as an aging population, rising obesity, unhealthy lifestyle and a lack of physical activity. Also, nearly eighty percent of recent migrants to Canada are of Asian, African or Hispanic origin that are naturally more prone to diabetes. These new Canadians have further pushed up the figure for diabetics in Canada.

How Diabetes affects the Nation’s Population

Diabetes is associated with various health complications that include both fatal and non-fatal conditions. Treatment of the ailment can be protracted and expensive if not diagnosed in the initial stages. Moreover, treatment has to be continued throughout the life of the afflicted person as this is a chronic condition that cannot be cured; only controlled.

Serious complications include cardiac disease, vision problem (including blindness) renal failure, nerve damage and much more. Effective treatment involves a complete overhaul of lifestyle like going for regular workouts and switching over to a special diet. All this makes diabetes treatment and control quite expensive and difficult.

Diabetics in Canada

According to the Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA), currently over nine million Canadians are suffering from diabetes and about six million are considered pre-diabetic. The CDA also estimates that almost fifty percent of those who are pre-diabetic will ultimately suffer from Type II or adult diabetes.

Diabetes-related ailments are the primary cause for death of more than 41,500 Canadians every year.

In fact, Canadians with diabetes are expected to die at least fifteen to twenty years earlier than people who are not suffering from this disease. In case of Type I diabetes, life expectancy can be shortened by fifteen years whereas in case of Type II diabetes life expectancy decreases by five to ten years.

The CDA estimates that diabetics now spend between $1,000 and $15,000 annually towards treatment and other related expenses. In fact, the Canadian healthcare system is expected to spend about $16.9 billion annually by the year 2020 towards diabetes related awareness programmes, control and treatment costs. This is a sharp rise from $11.7 billion that was spent in 2010.

Growing Menace of diabetes in Canada
Recent surveys conducted by Statistics Canada throw up some alarming figures on the diabetes situation in the country. The 2012 figures indicate that there are over 1,008,708 male and 915,358 female diabetics in the country.
A detailed analysis of figures also shows that chances of being afflicted with diabetes increases with age. Almost one in every six senior male and one in every seven senior female Canadian is prone to diabetes as compared to young people aged between twelve and twenty four years.

Studies conducted by the Public Health Agency of Canada also point towards an increased prevalence of this ailment in males (7.2%) than females (6.4%). All figures have been arrived at after conducting surveys starting from the age group of twelve years since juvenile diabetes is also very common.


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