Diabetes I death I research I prevention I diabetes fund


Research shows that, on average, people with diabetes die earlier than people without diabetes. Research institute Nivel and RIVM have conducted research for the first time on how many diabetics die in the Netherlands.

The Diabetes Fund indicates that the average life expectancy in type 1 diabetes is thirteen years lower and four years lower in type 2 diabetes. Life expectancy in diabetics is related to the extent to which their blood glucose is under control and the occurrence of complications. Complications that can occur include cardiovascular disease and damage to the eyes, feet, kidneys and nerves.

On average, 39,000 people die each year with diabetes. That is more than a quarter of the total number of deaths, according to Nivel and RIVM. In the Netherlands, almost 1.2 million Dutch people have diabetes. This is expected to increase to more than 1.4 million by 2040.

Shocking results

Internist-vascular medicine/diabetology Dr. Erik Serné, finds these results shocking. The difference in life expectancy between diabetics and people without diabetes is huge. In addition, Erik Serné is hopeful due to various developments. There are innovative treatments, especially for type 2 diabetes. A change in lifestyle has shown, in type 2 diabetes, that this loss in life years can be limited. Early and strict treatment of high blood sugar levels is also promising in type 1, too. These high blood sugar levels are the leading cause of premature death.

Prevention is better than cure

In particular, the number of people with type 2 diabetes is increasing rapidly. A major cause of this is our current lifestyle. By changing this lifestyle, diabetes can be prevented. More exercise, healthier food and less stress. This sounds simple, but it certainly isn’t. Often this is only possible with behavioral change and that is not a quick change. It takes time to adjust your lifestyle. But the results of this research indicate how necessary this is.