The study authors used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, which encompassed over 20,000 people. In general, Americans live longer lives than we did 35 years ago, and mortality rates for men with diabetes fell sharply, from 42 to 24 annual deaths per 1,000 people.
Death rates for women with diabetes remained the same, and in fact the difference in the morality rates for women with and without diabetes doubled over that time. While the news for men is certainly promising, the lack of progress in the health of women with diabetes is troubling.
One of the authors of the study, Edward Gregg, PhD said, "these findings are concerning for women and we may need to explore whether different approaches are needed to improve health outcomes for women with diabetes."
So what can women with diabetes do to maximize their life expectancy? The American College of Physicians recommends regular checkups with your doctor for blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure.. They also recommend that a healthy diet, not smoking, and staying active all have a positive effect.