Mexican adults are dying too early as a result of complications from diabetes.

More about diabetes and Mexican adults

Diabetes and obesity are very common in Mexico. In fact, one in five Mexican adults have been diagnosed with diabetes by age 60. That means that 20% of Mexican adults have diabetes. Worldwide, there will be about 625 million people living with diabetes by the year 2045. Unfortunately, low-income and middle-income countries will see even more diabetes than high-income countries, as resources to treat diabetes might be less available in the lower-income countries. Also, in higher income countries, patients may be diagnosed earlier, have better medical care, and better control their blood sugar level.

The Mexico City Prospective Study looked at 150,000 adults in Mexico City over 14 years and found that 1 in 5 adults were diagnosed with diabetes by age 60. This study found that people with diagnosed or undiagnosed diabetes were older and less likely to be college educated than people without diabetes. Also, a longer time since diagnosis was linked to higher blood pressure, higher body mass index, and older age. In addition, this study found that people with diabetes had very poor glycaemic control, which meaning that they are not able to keep their blood sugar levels in a good range. This is very important, because the longer someone has had diabetes and the worse their glycaemic control is, the higher their risk of dying. For example, people with poor glycaemic control have 2 times the risk of death than those with better control. In addition, if you have had diabetes for over 10 years, your risk of developing complications greatly increases.

In Mexico, there is a strong link between diabetes and early death. For example, deaths can be caused by different kinds of complications from diabetes such as vascular disease, kidney disease, and infection. In 2016, Mexico called the rate of diabetes a national emergency so that they could focus on improving the quality of medical care, ensuring access to medicine regardless of income level, and getting the public regularly screened for diabetes and complications. The authors of this study believe that if we can delay the onset of type 2 diabetes as well as improve diabetes treatment and care, then we can reduce the number of early adult deaths in Mexico.

[Abstract Link]

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