The World Health Organization is marked world health day by calling on organizations to take action against diabetes.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar, gives us the energy that we need to live. If it cannot get into the cells to be burned as energy, sugar builds up to harmful levels in the blood.
In 2008, an estimated 347 million people in the world had diabetes and the prevalence is growing, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Also, in 2012, the disease was the direct cause of some 1.5 million deaths, with more than 80% of those occurring in low- and middle-income countries.
WHO is focusing its Key messages on diabetes to increase awareness about the rise of the disease, its staggering burden and consequences -especially in third world countries- and to trigger specific, effective and affordable actions to tackle diabetes.
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