Diabetes is a chronic disease in which your body can't process sugar normally, leaving you with too much sugar in your blood. This can cause symptoms such as fatigue, weakness and excessive thirst. Diabetics are at risk for other chronic conditions such as kidney disease, heart disease, blindness and amupation (needing to have a limb, like a foot, cut off), and can cause death. 

Eating right and exercising can help you lower your risk of diabetes. DHH's Diabetes Prevention and Control Program offers resources to help people who have diabetes better manage their health, and gives tips to help people who don't have diabetes lower their chances of getting it.

Prevalence of Diagnosed Diabetes per 100 Adult Population, by Age, 2001-2004
Year 18-44 45-64 65-74 75+ Total Age-
2000 2.2 10.1 18.0 12.5 6.8 6.8
2001 2.6 10.7 16.0 14.6 7.1 7.2
2002 2.7 11.7 17.6 15.5 7.7 7.8
2003 2.7 12.1 18.0 16.8 8.0 8.0
2004 12.8 12.8 20.6 16.9 8.4 8.0

Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics, National Diabetes Surveillance Systems. State specific estimates of Diagnosed Diabetes Among Adults. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/statistics/prev/state/tPrevalenceTotal.htm.

Burden of Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes (women who were not previously diabetic and develop diabetes during pregnancy) affects about 4 percent of all pregnant women, resulting in nearly 135,000 cases of gestational diabetes in the United States each year.

Burden of Diabetes – LA Mortality

Number of diabetes deaths per 100,000 population, 2003

40.8 25.3

Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics, Division of Vital Statistics, National Vital Statistics Report Volume 54, Number 13, April 19, 2006, Available at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr54/nvsr54_13.pdf.

  • As of 2004, approximately 274,000 adults, or 7 percent of adults in Louisiana, have been diagnosed with diabetes (BRFSS, 2004).
  • African Americans have the highest prevalence of diabetes, with a 10.9% diagnosis rate, compared toa to 7.9% of Hispanics and 7.9% and 7% of the white population (BRFSS, 2004).
  • Louisiana's death rate from diabetes (32.5 per 100,00) is higher than other U.S. states. The national death  rate due from diabetes is 18.5 per 100,000.
  • In 2002, diabetes caused 3,190 deaths, and approximately 830 (26%) listed cardiovascular disease as an co-occuring cause.
  • In 2001, the total cost of hospital discharges for people with diabetesdiabetesin Louisiana was approximately $1.5 billion dollars in (LAHIDD,(LAHIDD,2001)

Diabetes at the National Level

Diabetes Guides and Publications