Home News Spanish National DIABETES KILLS 25,000 EACH YEAR IN SPAIN


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Diabetes kills around 25,000 people and costs the National Health Service 23 billion euro every year in Spain, according to the Spanish Federación de Diabéticos Españoles, who wanted to raise awareness of the disease in conjunction with World Diabetes Day.

The costs not only relate to the physical costs of treatment, but also the indirect expense caused by such phenomena as absenteeism, early retirement and social spending, although the actual annual cost per patient for hospital treatment is 1,708 euro.

In relation to the number of fatalities, the disease costs the lives of 25,000 people in Spain each year, and a staggering 43% of those who suffer from the condition remain undiagnosed, according to Andoni Lorenzo Garmendia, the president of the federation. Furthermore, the International Diabetes Federation warns that by 2035 there will be an increase of 55% of cases of diabetes worldwide.

The increased incidence is “intimately” linked to changes in the lifestyle of the people in more recent years, especially the increase in obesity rates. According to the latest data from a 2014 study of obesity worldwide, one in six people in Spain are obese, and 26% of boys and 24% of girls are overweight.

According to the coordinator of Community Nutrition and Public Health for the Spanish Foundation of Dieticians, Manuel Montiño, diabetes is “a disease of civilization because it is related to the intake of foods high in sugar, fat and sodium, and with increased sedentary lifestyle among the population”, citing evidence from a meta-analysis of 22 trials that have shown an improvement in various parameters of metabolic syndrome leading to reduced risk of diabetes.

Specifically, it has been reported that some of these studies have shown that reducing red meat consumption is associated with a lower risk of diabetes. In addition, a daily intake of one can of sugared soda increases the chances of developing the disease by 18%, and although there is no evidence that saturated and trans fats and nuts increase the direct risk, they do in terms of cardiovascular disease, one of the major complications of diabetes patients.

Similarly, the dietician continues, research has revealed that the Mediterranean diet reduces the chance of developing diabetes by 23%, and there are benefits in consuming fibre, fruits and vegetables and omega-3 fatty acids when consumed as part of a healthy diet.

“Therefore, this disease can be prevented with a healthy diet with regular physical exercise”, Montiño concludes.

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