The Diabetes Epidemic
The Latest on Treatment and Prevention

Summary

THE DR. LAWRENCE H. AND ROBERTA COHN FORUMS

THE DIABETES EPIDEMIC: The Latest on Treatment and Prevention
Presented jointly with HuffPost

Despite decades of research and relentless messaging about the importance of diet and exercise, type 2 diabetes remains a major threat to the lives of millions of Americans. As new diagnoses in some populations plateau, rates in others groups, including African Americans and Latinos, are increasing. Why does this largely preventable and multifactorial condition persist? What are the latest treatments available for individuals living with diabetes? And what technological and medical breakthroughs lie on the horizon? In this Forum — held on World Diabetes Day — experts in medical innovation, food policy, diabetes and obesity research, and community outreach assessed the promise of new approaches to diabetes, as well as explored remaining challenges.

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Presented jointly with HuffPost

Background Articles

Image Credit: iStock: mcbrugg

  • The Forum Moderator

    Welcome everyone. Our event will begin in about 10 minutes.

  • The Forum Moderator

    We are getting our panelists settled and will start in a minute

  • The Forum Moderator

    We have begun. Welcome everyone.

  • The Forum Moderator

    Today we talking about The Diabetes Epidemic. This event is presented jointly with HuffPost.

  • The Forum Moderator

    This clip is courtesy of the American Diabetes Association.

  • The Forum Moderator

    We will have a brief Q&A towards the end of this discussion. You can post your questions to theforum@hsph.harvard.edu or post them here.

  • The Forum Moderator

    The Global Health Education and Learning Incubator at Harvard University has created a collection of information about diabetes here: http://repository.gheli.harvard.edu/repository/collection/25/

  • The Forum Moderator

    You can also learn more from the American Diabetes Association at http://www.diabetes.org/

  • The Forum Moderator

    Today is World Diabetes Day: http://www.worlddiabetesday.org/

  • Paul Nisson

    how do I make a private comment to the HSPH organizer of the Forum series? thanks

  • The Forum Moderator

    This clip is also courtesy of the American Diabetes Association.

  • Pete Dupree

    Hello, as a state TB Program Manager and TB Controller, diabetes is the number one co-morbidity we find among our TB patients. I’m curious if anyone is looking at collaborating with Diabetes educators and TB clinics on linking at-risk patients to appropriate providers.

    • The Forum Moderator

      Great question. I have passed it along.

      • Pete Dupree

        Thanks for reading my question. So many TB outbreaks are being driven by epidemic levels of diabetes. Be well.

  • The Forum Moderator

    Do you have questions for the panelists? You can email them to theforum@hsph.harvard.edu or post them here.

  • The Forum Moderator

    Missed any of the webcast? We will post the video on demand on this page today. We also will post a searchable transcript in a few days.

  • The Forum Moderator

    We are wrapping up. Thank you all for joining us today.

  • The Forum Moderator

    Join us again on December 5 from 12:30-1:30pm ET when we will discuss “The Health Data Revolution: Improving Outcomes, Protecting Privacy”. This live webcast also will be presented jointly with HuffPost and will be part of the Dr. Lawrence H. and Roberta Cohn Forums.

  • kal505

    Question from email

    Can you clarify the accuracy of considering obesity as a marker/predictor of diabetes? I’ve read that obesity predicts diabetes, but also have read that health issues such as diabetes that are presented as obesity issues are actually more firmly connected to diet quality. For example, when someone who is overweight/obese exercises and eats lots of fruits/veggies and other healthy foods, their overall health and well-being is similar to someone non-overweight/obese with similar habits. And vice versa. Obesity in this frame is a marker that may suggest poor diet and thus poor outcomes, but obesity itself is not the cause of health problems such as diabetes. If this is true – can you discuss what needs to happen to reshape this conversation which is so often framed as a shaming and personal responsibility issue rather than a food landscape/systems issue?

  • kal505

    Question from email

    Do you think the nutrition/diabetes issue is somewhat analogous to the tobacco/lung cancer health issue in that doing anything meaningful might interfere with “business as usual?” Despite meaningful data, “organized medicine” did little to help patients
    stop smoking. Journals had ads for tobacco. It seems that as our fast foods emigrate globally they take their chronic diseases – heart disease, T2DM and others – with them. Yet, little is being done to meaningfully educate the public. What is the role of today’s physician in this?

  • kal505

    Question from email

    What is your advice on how we can get excise taxes to reduce the consumption of sugar sweetened beverages enacted at the state or federal level, as they currently are only operating in a few municipalities or counties at the local level? What are the main barriers to getting these taxes to spread more broadly?

  • kal505

    Question from email

    There really is a strong need for less expensive diabetes technologies. I’m interested in your discussion about the role of smart devices to help level the playing field and provide more equal access for managing diabetes. What else is on the horizon in terms of things like cloud based systems that can help to make CGM more widespread? And what role will health insurance play in all of this as treatment get more into the realm of connected devices, smart phones and that sort of thing?

  • kal505

    Question from email

    What specific foods or dietary practices / supplements would help prevent the onset of diabetes Type 2 — I am approaching 60, am in menopause. My mother developed Type 2 diabetes as she reached this age, but reversed it through diet and daily walking! She did not have my symptoms or ate well but was similarly overweight. Thank you for any advice.