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Saudi Arabia has one of the highest percentages of Diabetes in the world, with an estimated number of 2,065,300 people diagnosed with the disease by 2010, which is 16.8% of the population (although some studies have shown this percentage to be higher).13 (image)

Saudi Arabia map

In terms of numbers, the three countries with the highest number of diabetics are India, China, and the United States. However, these are also three of the most populous countries in the world, so higher numbers of diabetics makes sense, but what is interesting are the percentages of diabetics in these three countries in comparison to the percentage of diabetics in Saudi Arabia. In the United States, 10% of the population will have diabetes in 2010, 7.8% in India, and 4.2% in China, compared to the 16.8% in Saudi Arabia.14 

 

The alarming prevalence of diabetes in Saudi Arabia has been called an epidemic by many studies. One study has noted the increase in awareness of the disease, however, which could be reflective of improvements in the healthcare system in the country. The high and increasing rates of diabetes in Saudi Arabia could be due to many factors, but most studies show that obesity and lack of exercise are very prominent factors.15