In this article, we shall discuss the 10 best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes. To skip our detailed analysis of the global diabetes industry and the larger pharmaceutical industry in 2023, go directly and see 5 Best Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes.
Diabetes is directly responsible for more than 280,000 deaths each year. As fast food consumption and obesity levels reach an all time high, the global diabetes market is projected to adapt accordingly. With a significant increase in the global diabetic population, technological advancements, and rising adoption rates in emerging regions, the global diabetes industry is projected to reach more than $118 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 6.67% during the forecast period. According to an article by Bloomberg, over 1.3 billion people globally are projected to have diabetes by 2050, causing patients to look for the best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes. Some of the biggest players in the insulin industry are Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK), Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:LLY), and Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT).
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The Rise of Digital Therapeutics: An Analysis
As the burden of chronic diseases like diabetes exacerbate the economic crisis globally, the challenges have created a requirement for comprehensive disease management solutions. Since chronic conditions like diabetes are largely untreatable and need to be managed through lifelong medication and care, disease burdens at a population level are higher than they need to be. The need to integrate digital technologies with biotech seems to be more pronounced than ever as one of the best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes. According to an article by McKinsey, global digital health funding increased by more than 79% compared to 2022 to reach $57.2 billion in 2023. Much of this funding has largely been reserved for digital therapeutics, which include numerous points of intervention along the patient's journey, comprising of monitoring, medication, adherence, behavioral engagement, personalized coaching, and real time custom health recommendations. Funding for digital therapeutics has grown at a massive scale - nearly 134 percent up from 2022 to reach nearly $9 billion in 2023.
According to another study by McKinsey, digital therapeutics offer pharmaceutical companies access to new sections of the healthcare value chain and an opportunity to operate in the much larger, more lucrative end-to-end healthcare market. Incumbent pharmaceuticals already have some inherent advantages in that they already boast direct access to patients, intrinsic knowledge of pain points in the disease management journey, and profound experience with providing some of the best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes. However, for a successful infiltration into the digital therapeutics market, pharmaceutical companies may need to recruit or upskill employees with skills in product development, design, data science, and strategic partnerships. They should construct five year plans to build on their digital capabilities and affiliate their new digital workforce with the culture, vision, mission and values to compete against start-ups. Companies which adapt quickly will have first-mover advantage, which is why investors are flocking to stocks like Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK), Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:LLY), and Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT), which have diverted significant investment in rewiring their technology, tools, and operating models to realize their digital and analytics ambitions in 2023. To read more on companies which have integrated digital technology in their product portfolio, read our article on 11 Best Digital Technology Stocks to Buy.
The Insulin Pumps Market: An Analysis
In 2023, according to a survey conducted by Tandem Diabetes Care, more than 94% of insulin pump users recorded positive results and an improved quality of life due to insulin pump therapy. According to a report by Acumen Research and Consulting, the insulin pump market has been recording strong growth, driven by the rising prevalence of type 2 diabetes, technological advancements pertaining to digital therapeutics, and favorable reimbursement policies. As of 2023, the global insulin pump market is estimated to rise from $5.1 billion in 2022 to more than $11.4 billion by 2032, at a CAGR of 8.5%.
There are multiple growth drivers influencing the positive outlook of the insulin pump market, the foremost being the rising global prevalence of type 2 diabetes and the subsequent increase in insulin users. Owing to the overwhelmingly positive response to insulin pumps over traditional syringe injection as one of the best ways to treat type 2 diabetes, physician recommendations have also begun to skyrocket. Furthermore, with companies like Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK), Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:LLY), and Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) dominating the insulin pump market, the availability of advanced, easy-to-use insulin pumps is a fundamental growth driver.
Furthermore, according to an article by McKinsey, technological advancements in digital therapeutics are also resulting in improved credibility and efficiency of the insulin pumps available in the market. The integration of advanced features like CGM connectivity, smartphone applications for data tracking, enhanced user interfaces, and predictive algorithms for incredibly precise insulin delivery are driving market revenue growth to unprecedented levels. Furthermore, consumers are increasingly moving towards customization and personalization within the insulin pumps market. Many companies are now allowing for personalization based on the individual's unique lifestyle, insulin needs, and activity levels.
To compile our list of the 10 best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes, we conducted a comprehensive literature review of third-party, peer-reviewed studies and surveys. We primarily limited our approach to government data (1, 2, 3) and academic sources (1, 2) to compile our list. Then, we identified 30 common recommendations and strategies which are consistently mentioned across various reputable sources and expert opinions. Next, we established an evidence based criteria for inclusion in the list: frequency of recommendation (5 points), strength of scientific evidence (4 points), effectiveness (3 points), feasibility (2 points), and relevance to type-2 diabetes (1 point). We then proceeded to score each recommendation according to the aforementioned criteria and selected ten recommendations which scored the highest points. If there was an entry which was recommended by one source but rejected by another, we discarded it; it did not make our list. Where there was a tie, we broke it based on the frequency of recommendation.
To read about the obesity epidemic in the United States and its close interrelation with late onset diabetes, check out our coverage of the 30 Most Overweight and Obese Cities in the U.S. in 2023.
Best Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
10. Optimize Vitamin D Levels
Insider Monkey's Score: 5
One of the best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes is to optimize the vitamin D levels in the body. Studies show that maintaining adequate levels of Vitamin D helps in blood sugar management, which subsequently aids patients with prediabetic orientations. Thus, doctors are now suggesting patients increase their intake of vitamin D to prevent type 2 diabetes. Vitamin D intake can be carried out not only through food sources, like fatty fish and cod liver oil, but also via sun exposure and supplements prescribed by a doctor.
9. Increase Water Intake
Insider Monkey's Score: 6
To prevent type 2 diabetes, it is advisable to substitute sugary and sweetened drinks with water. One study conducted by the National Institutes of Health found that consumption of one serving of a sugary drink may increase the chances of developing type 2 diabetes by 18%. On the other hand, water intake helps with blood sugar management and maintaining insulin levels. A recent study by the CDC showed that overweight people who followed a comprehensive diet plan and replaced sweetened drinks with water experienced decreased levels of insulin resistance and fasting blood sugar.
8. Quit Smoking
Insider Monkey's Score: 6
Smoking can not only contribute to diseases like heart disease or lung cancer, but is also linked as a precursor to type 2 diabetes. People who smoke have a higher chance of experiencing insulin resistance. In fact, people who smoke more are increasingly prone to type 2 diabetes, as compared to those who smoke less. In a study conducted by Harvard, it was found that the risk of diabetes in smokers decreases over time after they quit smoking.
7. Reduce Sedentary Behaviour
Insider Monkey's Score: 7
Reducing sedentary behavior can significantly reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. One study suggests that those who have 10 hours of sedentary time per day are twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes, as compared to those who have a nominal 8.3 hours of sedentary time. Sedentary behavior can be changed with minor adjustments, like standing up for a while or taking short walks. According to Harvard, it is important to set achievable goals in order to cut sedentary behavior.
6. Reduce Alcohol Consumption
Insider Monkey's Score: 9
Alcohol consumption is often linked with a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Alcoholic drinks contain exorbitantly large amounts of calories, which can not only lead to obesity but eventually lead to diabetes as well. Additionally, heavy drinking may also increase insulin resistance, which exacerbates chances of developing late onset diabetes. Thus, many studies suggest that reducing alcohol consumption can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes to a great extent. Reducing alcohol consumption ranks number 6 on our list of the 10 Best Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes.
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Disclosure: None. 10 Best Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes is originally published on Insider Monkey.