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In Sri Lanka, with average life expectancy at 76 years and rising, and urbanization bringing with it lifestyle changes affecting more and more sectors of society, people are increasingly exposed to risk factors for chronic disease. While life expectancy for women in Sri Lanka has made steady gains since 1920, it has not improved for men since 1980 due to risk factors such as smoking and excessive drinking and delays in seeking healthcare.1
The findings to date of this BRIDGES project have confirmed the presence of risk factors for diabetes among young people in Sri Lanka. In Sri Lanka, studies have shown that one in five adults has either diabetes or pre-diabetes, but until DIABRISK-SL, no research had been carried out into risk factors among the nation’s young people. Their findings suggest that urgent action is required to raise awareness of diabetes and obesity in developing countries and encourage young people to make lifestyle changes to reduce their risk.
1.World Bank. Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases in Sri Lanka. World Bank. Washington DC, 2011.
(1): CIA factbook
(2): WHO 2008
(3): IDF Diabetes Atlas, 5th edition annual update, 2012