Health Fact Sheets
Diabetes, 2015

Release date: March 22, 2017

In 2015, 6.9% of Canadians aged 12 and older (roughly 2.1 million people) reported being diagnosed with diabetes.Note 1 Overall, males (7.8%) were more likely than females (5.9%) to report that they had diabetes.Note 2 Diabetes increased with ageNote 3 for both males and females up to age 64. The prevalence did not increase significantly for those aged 75 or older (Chart 1).

Chart 1 Diabetes, by age group and sex, household population aged 12 or older, Canada, 2015

Data table for Chart 1
Data table for Chart 1
Table summary
This table displays the results of Data table for Chart 1. The information is grouped by Age group (years) (appearing as row headers), Percent and Confidence Interval, calculated using Lower 95% and Upper 95% units of measure (appearing as column headers).
Age group (years) Percent Confidence Interval
Lower 95% Upper 95%
Males  
Total (12 or older) 7.8 7.3 8.3
12 to 34 0.9Note E: Use with caution 0.6 1.2
35 to 49 4.9 3.8 6.0
50 to 64 11.2 10.0 12.5
65 to 74 20.6 18.5 22.8
75 or older 21.5 18.7 24.3
Females  
Total (12 or older) 5.9 5.5 6.4
12 to 34 0.8Note E: Use with caution 0.5 1.0
35 to 49 3.8 2.8 4.8
50 to 64 7.9 6.9 9.0
65 to 74 14.7 13.0 16.4
75 or older 15.3 13.4 17.1

The proportion of residents aged 12 and older who reported being diagnosed with diabetes was lower than the national average (6.9%) in Alberta (4.7%).Note 4

The proportion of residents who reported being diagnosed with diabetes was higher than the national average in:

  • Newfoundland and Labrador (10.5%)
  • Nova Scotia (10.1%)
  • New Brunswick (8.8%)

The proportion of residents who reported being diagnosed with diabetes was about the same as the national average in the other provinces.

Canadians aged 18 and older who were either overweight or obese were more likely than those who were classified as having a normal weightNote 5 to report that they had been diagnosed with diabetes. The prevalence of diabetes among obese Canadians was 13.6% in 2015, compared with 6.6% among overweight Canadians and 3.2% among those classified as having a normal weight.

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About Diabetes

Diabetes occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin, or when the insulin produced is not used effectively. Diabetes may lead to a reduced quality of life as well as complications such as heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.Note 6

Survey respondents were asked to report if they had been diagnosed with diabetes by a health professional. Included in the reports were:

  • type 1, which is usually diagnosed in children and adolescents;
  • type 2, which usually develops in adulthood; and
  • gestational diabetes, which occurs during pregnancy.

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References

James, R., T. K. Young, C.A. Mustard, and J. Blanchard. 1998. “The health of Canadians with diabetes.” Health Reports. Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 82-003. Vol. 9, no. 3. (Accessed January 11th, 2017)

Millar, W., J. Young, and T. Kue 2003. “Tracking diabetes: Prevalence, incidence and risk factors.” Health Reports. Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 82-003. Vol. 14, no. 3. (Accessed January 11th, 2017)

Ng, E., K.M. McGrail, and J.A. Johnson. 2010. “Hospitalization risk in a type 2 diabetes cohort.” Health Reports. Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 82-003. Vol. 21, no. 3.  (Accessed January 11th, 2017)

Ross, N.A., H. Gilmour, K. Dasgupta. 2010. “14-year diabetes incidence: The role of socio-economic status.” Health Reports. Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 82-003. Vol.21, no. 3.  (Accessed January 11th, 2017)

Data

Additional data from the Canadian Community Health Survey are available from CANSIM table 105–0508.

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