Does Diabetes Cuts Life Expectancy?

Diabetes Life Expectancy

The topic of diabetes and life expectancy is a complex one as there are many factors to consider before attempting seek a perfect number for mortality.  It is certain to say that there are extenuating factors that can reduce the diabetes life expectancy, and if changes aren’t made for those at risk, these factors will play a significant role in longevity.

Type 1 Diabetes

Since type 1 diabetes is more prevalent in younger people (early childhood to young adult), most situations with diabetes life expectancy in relation to type 1 diabetes are not a factor.  That is not to say that there aren’t older people who still suffer from the condition, because there are people in their 50’s to early 70’s that are insulin dependent.  Years ago before the advent of insulin, many people who were diagnosed with type1 diabetes had a shorter life expectancy due to a complication arising from the disease known as ketoacidosis.  Ketoacidosis is a complication which occurs when glucose is not available as a means of energy for the body, and the system resorts to using fat instead.  Ketones (fatty byproduct) build up in the body’s blood system.

Type 2 Diabetes

Historically, type 2 diabetes was more commonly found in adults rather than younger people-but that statistic is changing.  More and more cases of type 2 diabetes are being discovered in younger generations.  The treatment varies with type 2 as opposed to type 1 in the fact that the body either has difficulty producing insulin or there is a resistance within the body to it.  This can create symptoms that can produce health risks that could pose a threat to life.

Children Diabetes life expectancy for children may not necessarily be altered if a plan is instilled at an early age.  This includes a healthy diet, regular exercise and frequent monitoring of the condition.  Obesity and lack of structure (also poor diet) contribute to other complications that could arise later in adulthood.


There are calculators that include diabetes life expectancy available.  Most of them factor in all aspects of life (nutrition, exercise, stressors and sexual habits) to determine an average life expectancy, as well as a high and a low range. Also, there are quantifiers that can assist in revealing how much longer an individual can live with certain adjustments.  It is difficult to determine just how accurate this is because situations and factors are constantly changing.  So an answer to the calculator now many very well change in five years.

On the whole, people who have diabetes, as opposed to those who do not, have a greater chance of having a shorter life expectancy. Furthermore, according to Science Daily (June 12, 2007), “Men and women with diabetes at age 50 and older appear not to live as long overall, or have as many years  it out cardiovascular disease, than individuals without diabetes, according to a recent study.”  There are complications that contribute to this fact.  Often, they are conditions that arise because of diabetes.  Heart attacks, strokes, infection and kidney failure are just some of these complications.

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