Prevalence of type 2 diabetes and obesity rising in California

According to a recent study, the majority of adults in California classify as obese or overweight and more than 2 million individuals have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

The UCLA Center for Health Policy Research found that both conditions have increased significantly between 2001 and 2007, with the prevalence of diabetes rising 26 percent during that time.

Although a higher prevalence of both was observed in American Indians, African-Americans and Latinos, they occurred in all racial and ethnic groups, particularly individuals who lived in poorer communities.

"When so many people of different ages, income and educational levels are struggling with obesity and diabetes, it suggests that going on a diet is not enough," said lead author Allison Diamant. "We need to take a hard look at the environmental and structural factors that contribute to these conditions."

The researchers urged local governments to support the efforts of communities in bringing healthy food and opportunities to residents, and promoting physical activity by improving the cleanliness and safety of their neighborhoods.

The total cost of diabetes is estimated to be $24 billion in the state of California, with a large portion of those costs spent on direct medical care. The cost of obesity is almost equivalent at nearly $21 billion.
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