What is Diabetes?

Type 1 Diabetes

With type 1 Diabetes, your body does not make insulin. Your immune system attacks and destroys the cells in your pancreas that make insulin. Type 1 Diabetes is usually diagnosed in children and young adults, although it can appear at any age. People with type 1 Diabetes need to take insulin every day to stay alive.

Type 2 Diabetes

With type 2 Diabetes, your body does not make or use insulin well. You can develop type 2 Diabetes at any age, even during childhood. However, this type of Diabetes occurs most often in middle-aged and older people. Type 2 is the most common type of Diabetes.


The Effect of Diabetes

  • 1 in 3 Canadians has Diabetes or Prediabetes
  • More than ½ of Canadians who are 20 years old today will develop Diabetes in their lifetime
  • The risk for Indigenous Canadians is 80% (Indigenous Canadians make up 4.3% of the total Canadian population)
  • Life expectancy of a person with Diabetes is shortened by an average of 13 years.
  • Every 6 seconds, one person in the world dies from diabetes and its related complications

Every year people living with Diabetes account for


of strokes


of heart attacks


of kidney failures requiring dialysis


of non-traumatic amputations

The Cost of Diabetes

Cost to Canada’s Health Care System

2000 - $6.3 billion

2010 - $12.2 billion

2020 - estimated $27 billion

Employer costs for Employees Living with Diabetes

An average of $1,500.00 per year lost in productivity as well as an average of $1,500.00 per year in extra benefit plan costs.

World Wide Costs

$1.3 trillion spent on controlling diabetes worldwide each year