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Latinos fall 2nd Minority Victims to Diabetes

During the month of November health care organizations advocate to better educating the communities across the nation on diabetes as part of the American Diabetes Month. Worldwide Diabetes Day was observed during November 14th.

The United States Department of Health Human Services (USDHHS) reports that diabetes is documented to be the sixth (6) leading cause of death as a result of its complications. When comparing the San Joaquin County (SJC) Public Health 2011 Health Status Report which estimates 26 million U.S. residents to live with diabetes; an increase of 10 million if compared to the 1999 USDHHS report.

According to SJC Public Health, 8.7 percent of residents live with diabetes in the County; therefore, 59,621 residents out of 685,306 have developed diabetes. The report notes that 4 out of 5 of adult cases are adult onset type 2 diabetes —a preventable chronic disease.

While both nationally and locally, the Latino population follow the leading Non-Hispanic African American minority who suffers from the highest death rate caused by diabetes. Throughout the United States, 10.8 percent of non-Hispanic African Americans have Diabetes and Latinos are close with 10.6 percent. Among Hispanics/Latinos, diabetes prevalence rates 11.9 percent for Mexican-Americans, 12.6 percent for Puerto Ricans and are 8.2 percent for Cubans.

Diabetes, also called Diabetes mellitus, is a chronic illness that is characterized by a group of metabolic diseases in which a person has high blood sugar, either because the body does not produce enough insulin, or because cells do not respond to the insulin that is produced.

There are three types of Diabetes, Type 1 and 2 are incurable yet manageable. Type 1, also called Juvenile Diabetes begins in childhood and is caused by the body’s inability to produce insulin and Type 2, is caused by environmental factors that result in insulin resistance. The 3rd is gestational diabetes which is pregnancy onset and thus usually disappears after childbirth. READ MORE

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