How many Americans suffer from type 1 and type 2 diabetes?
Nearly 21 million Americans have diabetes, a group of serious diseases characterized by high blood glucose levels that result from defects in the body’s ability to produce and/or use insulin. Diabetes can lead to severely debilitating or fatal complications, such as heart disease, blindness, kidney disease, and amputations. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for 90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes, involves insulin resistance - the body’s inability to properly use its own insulin. Type 2 used to occur mainly in adults who were overweight and ages 40 and older. Now, as more children and adolescents in the United States become overweight and inactive, type 2 diabetes is occurring more often in young people. (CDC)