Kuwaitis' oil wealth causes rise in diabetes
Sunday 15 July 2012
Dhari al-Fadli, a patient being treated at a diabetes clinic in Kuwait, is a victim of the dark side of his country's economic boom. After his weight went over 19 stone, Fadli had to inject himself with insulin before every meal. He has now lost enough weight to stop the injections, but still has to take diabetic medication.
"We have a saying here that if you don't have diabetes, you're not a Kuwaiti," said Fadli, a 49-year-old father of five. In fact, more than one in five Kuwaitis suffer from the disease. Oil wealth has given Kuwait and nearby countries in the Gulf some of the highest per capita incomes in the world. But it has also created lifestyles – over-eating, high-sugar diets, cushy jobs and heavy reliance on cars – that are leading to an explosion of diabetes in the region, experts say.
Five of the 10 countries where diabetes is most prevalent are located in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, according to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF). Kuwait is third, Qatar sixth, Saudi Arabia seventh, Bahrain eighth and the UAE 10th. The rest of the top 10 are Pacific island nations with much smaller populations and Lebanon, which is fifth. A staggering 21.1 per cent of people in Kuwait suffer from diabetes, while prevalence rates are around 20 per cent in other GCC countries, IDF figures show. In the US, the rate is 9.6 per cent; worldwide, it is 8.5.
Genetic factors apparently contribute to the Gulf's high incidence of diabetes. But expatriates living in the Gulf have a higher incidence of diabetes than they do in their home countries. This suggests lifestyles are a major reason for this regional problem.
Life & Style blogs
Anal sex study reveals climate of 'coercion'
Ice Bucket Challenge: ALS Association doesn't yet know what to do with all of the money raised
The science of saturated fat: A big fat surprise about nutrition?
The best gowns on the red carpet of 2014 Venice Film Festival
iPhone 6 'release date' firmed up in leaked photos of Apple smartphone
- 1 Students heading off to 'charity challenge' grounded at Gatwick after travel firm goes bust
- 2 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 3 Daily Show's Jon Stewart destroys Fox News for its Ferguson coverage
- 4 When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
- 5 Like Jennifer Aniston, I am no less of a woman because I am childless
- < Previous
- Next >
£350 - £400 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Cent...
£17000 - £20000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...
£450 - £500 per day: Orgtel: SAS Business Analyst, London, Banking, Credit Ris...
£32000 - £38000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...