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J Am Diet Assoc. 2008 Apr;108(4 Suppl 1):S12-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2008.01.023.

What is public health practice telling us about diabetes?

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Division of Diabetes Translation, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30341-3717, USA.


Many infectious diseases are recognized as a public health problem. If one were to apply the criteria for designating an infectious disease as a public health problem to diabetes mellitus, how would diabetes rate? The evidence that justifies referring to diabetes as a public health problem includes the burden on society caused by the number of complications and premature mortality, the growth in the number of people diagnosed with the disease since the early 1990s, and the growing public concern. Because diabetes is a public health problem, it warrants public health solutions. This review examines selected components of a framework that provides a useful way to examine what the public health community is doing to combat this growing epidemic.

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