According to the global burden of disease in 2017, more than 4 million people worldwide died due to being overweight or obese1, and rates of obesity in both adults and children continue to rise globally. The World Health Organization defines those who are overweight or obese as having “abnormal or excessive fat accumulation that presents a risk to health”. Obesity leads to chronic inflammation, which occurs early in adipose tissue expansion, and continues during chronic obesity, irrespective of patient age. This chronic, systemic inflammation leads to insulin resistance, β-cell dysfunction, and ultimately to type 2 diabetes and contributes to the long-term consequences of diabetes, including cardiovascular disease, retinopathy and nephropathy. The scale of this issue is truly staggering – as well as the >4 million deaths from obesity, 6.7 million deaths were recorded in 2021 for which diabetes was responsible.2 This digital learning journey will focus on the impact of obesity and insulin resistance in the post-Covid-19 era, highlighting their consequences in special situations, such as pregnancy, and suggesting the best strategies to be implemented in clinical practice to try and stem the tide of early and preventable deaths.
1Dai H, et al. PLoS Med 2020;17(7):e1003198. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003198.
2International Diabetes Federation Diabetes Atlas 2021 – 10th edition. Available from: https://diabetesatlas.org/