26 million Americans have Diabetes - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

26 million Americans have Diabetes

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -- Federal health officials raised the estimate of how many people in the U.S. have diabetes. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the new estimate Wednesday. It means about 1 in 12 Americans, or about 26 million people, have diabetes.  Diabetes is a disease in which the body has trouble processing sugar.

The new figure marks a 9 percent increase from the 2008 estimate of 23.6 million.

Health officials believe diabetes is becoming more common for two reasons -- more people are developing obesity-related Type 2 diabetes, and people who have it are living longer.

But CDC officials say an additional blood sugar test that's now used more widely may be responsible for as much as half of the increase.

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