Estimating Diabetes prevalence in Turkey in 2025, using a modelling approach

This paper comes from Kaan Sözmen, Belgin Unal, Simon Capewell, Julia Critchley and Martin O'Flaherty from the MedCHAMPS team. They used Turkish data from the Turkish national census, the Turkish National Institute, and from several studies of smoking and obesity trends (TURDEP-I, TURDEP-II & TEKHARF-1990) to produce projections in type II diabetes using a Markov model.  This model projects the prevalence and the number of people in Turkey who may be diagnosed with type II diabetes by 2025.

Having developed this model, they then used "what-if" scenarios to examine how relative reductions in obesity and the level of smoking would alter these predictions. The “what if” scenarios used were targets set by the WHO and the Turkish Ministry of Health.

Prevalence of type 2 diabetes and obesity were both projected to rise substantially in Turkey. Both obesity and type 2 diabetes were projected at to increase more in women than in men.



  • The projected type II DM prevalence for Turkey was 31.5% (16,134,941 people), 55% of whom were women.
  • Reducing relative obesity prevalence by 5% in 5 years would reduce this prevalence by 12.3%, giving a reduction of 1,997,451 T2DM cases.
  • Halting the rise in obesity would reduce prevalence by 7.6%, amounting to 1,217,648 T2DM cases.
  • Combining a halt in the rise of obesity with a 40% reduction in smoking was projected to result in a 7.9% reduction in prevalence, with a reduction of 1,252,923 cases.
  • A 10% reduction in obesity  and 40% reduction in smoking prevalence was projected to reduce T2DM prevalence by 12.6%, with 2,034,635 fewer T2DM cases.
  • A 10% reduction in the relative rate of obesity and 20% relative reduction in smoking prevalence could reduce prevalence by 10.5%, with 1,655,213 fewer T2DM cases.



The writers note that reductions in the prevalence of obesity may be difficult to achieve, and halting the rise in obesity would be more realistic, allowing for a higher long term target. Interventions to reduce smoking and obesity prevalence should take a population wide approach rather than be carried out on an individual basis.

Please have a look at the paper:

Sözmen K, Unal B, Capewell S, Critchley J, O'Flaherty M. Estimating diabetes prevalence in Turkey in 2025 with and without possible interventions to reduce obesity and smoking prevalence, using a modelling approach. International Journal of Public Health. 2014