Diabetes Facts & Figures

Diabetes Awareness Month is here!

So I thought it would be a good idea to share with you some facts and figures about diabetes and how it is affecting millions of Americans each year.

Prevalence of diabetes

Total: 30.3 million people (9.4% of the U.S. population has diabetes.)

Diagnosed: 23.1 million people

Undiagnosed: 7.2 million people

Prevalence of diabetes among different age groups

Age 18-44 years: 4.6 million 

Age 45-64 years: 14.3 million

Age 65 years or older: 12.0 milion 

Men:  15.3 million

Women: 14.9 million

*This total included:

132,000 children and adolescents younger than age 18 years (0.18% of the total U.S. population younger than age 18 years).

193,000 children and adolescents younger than age 20 years (0.24% of the total U.S. population younger than age 20 years).

About 5% of people with diabetes are estimated to have type 1 diabetes.

 Prevalence of diabetes by race/ethnicity among people 20 years or older

The prevalence was higher among Native Americans/Alaska Natives (15.1%), non-Hispanic blacks (12.7%), and people of Hispanic ethnicity (12.1%) than among non-Hispanic whites (7.4%) and Asians (8.0%)

Among people of Hispanic ethnicity, Mexicans had the highest prevalence (13.8%), followed by Puerto Ricans (12.0%), Cubans (9.0%), and Central/South Americans (8.5%)

Among Asians, Asian Indians had the highest prevalence (11.2%), followed by Filipinos (8.9%), and Chinese (4.3%). Other Asian groups had a prevalence of 8.5%

Prevalence varied significantly by education level, which is an indicator of socioeconomic status. Specifically, 12.6% of adults with less than a high school education had diagnosed diabetes versus 9.5% of those with a high school education and 7.2% of those with more than a high school education

Prevalence of Prediabetes

An estimated 33.9% of U.S. adults aged 18 years or older (84.1 million people) have prediabetes, based on their fasting glucose or A1C level. Nearly half (48.3%) of adults aged 65 years or older had prediabetes.

Among adults with prediabetes, 11.6% reported being told by a health professional that they had this condition.

Age-adjusted data indicated that more men (36.6%) than women (29.3%) had prediabetes.

Prevalence of prediabetes was similar among racial and ethnic groups.

Risk Factors for Complications


15.9% of adults are current smokers, and 34.5% had quit smoking but had a history of smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime.

Overweight and Obesity:

87.5% of adults were overweight or obese, defined as a body mass index (BMI) of 25 kg/m2 or higher.

Physical Inactivity:

40.8% of adults were physically inactive, defined as getting less than 10 minutes a week of moderate or vigorous activity in each of the physical activity categories of work, leisure time, and transportation.

High Blood Pressure:

73.6% of adults had systolic blood pressure of 140 mm Hg or higher or diastolic blood pressure of 90 mm Hg or higher, or they were on prescription medication for high blood pressure.

High Cholesterol (Hyperlipidemia):

58.2% of adults aged 21 years or older with no self-reported cardiovascular disease but who were eligible for statin therapy were on a lipid-lowering medication.

66.9% of adults aged 21 years or older with self-reported cardiovascular disease who were thus eligible for statin therapy were on a lipid-lowering medication.

High Blood Glucose (Hyperglycemia):

• 15.6% of adults had an A1C value higher than 9%.

Complications of Diabetes: 


More than 60 percent of non-traumatic lower-limb amputations in the United States occur among people with diabetes.

Nearly 82,000 non-traumatic lower-limb amputations are performed among people with diabetes each year.

Non-Hispanic blacks are 2.7 times as likely to suffer from lower-limb amputations as non-Hispanic whites.

Kidney Disease

Among U.S. adults aged 20 years or older with diagnosed diabetes, the estimated crude prevalence of chronic kidney disease (stages 1–4) was 36.5%.

Among those with diabetes and moderate to severe kidney disease (stage 3 or 4), 19.4% were aware of their kidney disease.

Approximately 53,000 people develop end-stage renal disease with diabetes as the primary cause each year.

Preventing Diabetes Complications

A podiatric physician, a doctor focusing on the treatment of diabetic foot and ankle conditions, plays an integral role in a diabetes management team. Diabetes can affect many parts of the body and can lead to serious complications such as blindness, kidney damage, and lower-limb amputations. Working together, people with diabetes and their health care providers, such as a podiatric physician, can reduce the occurrence of these and other diabetes complications.

Comprehensive foot care programs can reduce amputation rates by 45 percent to 85 percent.

Research in the United States and abroad has found that lifestyle changes can prevent or delay the onset of type II diabetes among high-risk adults.  Lifestyle interventions included diet and moderate-intensity physical activity, such as walking for 2.5 hours each week. 

My Clinical Experience

As you many know by now, I’ve been practicing medicine for over 20 years, and in that time I have seen thousands of diabetic patients. My practice is specialized to focus on diabetic care and to prevent diabetic limb loss and amputations.

I have discovered that most of my patients are not educated much about how to prevent complications of diabetes or how to reverse diabetes by their primary care physicians. I spend much of my time educating my patients about diabetes, what they should and should not be eating (and it’s not just about table sugar), how they can start to lose the stubborn weight and bloated belly by making a few simple changes in their daily routines, and how to save their eyes, kidneys, and feet from the damage that diabetes can do.

My passion is to help pre-diabetics, borderline diabetics, awomen who have been diagnosed with prenatal diabetes (research has found this to be a precursor to type II diabetes), and people who have been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance, reverse their diagnosis and prevent full blown type II diabetes from taking over their lives.

If you have any of these conditions or type II diabetes and would like to discuss how we can work together to prevent or reverse diabetes, schedule a free consultation with me so we can dive deeper to find out what is going on and come up with a plan of action for you: https://my.timetrade.com/book/Y1THR

P.S. Make sure to read my blog post published two weeks ago  and last week’s blog post for more information on reversing diabetes.

Dr. Michele Summers Colon, DPM, MS, RYT-500

3503 Lexington Ave.

El Monte, CA 91731

*Information for this blog post has been compiled using the latest statistics from the American Diabetes Association and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017 Report.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *