American Diabetes Association
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is a United States-based nonprofit that seeks to educate the public about diabetes and to help those affected by it through funding research to manage, cure and prevent diabetes (including type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes, and pre-diabetes). It is one of many non-profit organizations (American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen Foundation, the American Heart Association) that have emerged as an official institution by the American public and that highly influence and at times work in tandem with the government and healthcare system. They are sponsored by corporations including Tyson Foods, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Kraft, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Yoplait Yogurt, that target Americans to consume foods that are counterproductive to their proclaimed goal of good health. The irony is akin to supporting the use of tobacco, but food is a much easier consumer product behind which to hide. For this reason ADA and others often face and attempt to silence scrutiny through millions of dollars in additional marketing and advertising spend.
ADA consists of three separate 501 (c) (3) organizations:
American Diabetes Assocation® (ADA) American Diabetes Association Research Foundation, Inc. (ADARF) American Diabetes Association Property Title Holding Corp. (ADARTHC)
In 2016, the ADA's total revenue was $171 million.
The organization spends significant amounts on telemarketers including a contract with InfoCision, where telemarketers were instructed to lie to prospective donors that more of their donation was going toward the ADA than reality.
The ADA was founded in 1939 by six leading physicians − including Dr. Herman O. Mosenthal, Dr. Joseph T. Beardwood Jr., Dr. Joseph H. Barach, and Dr. E. S. Dillion − at their 1939 meeting of the American College of Physicians.
In September 1946, they hosted a meeting in Toronto, Canada to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the discovery of insulin. The meeting served as a successful forum for hundreds of physicians and leading figures interested in the studies of diabetes and carbohydrate metabolism. The organization is now a national nonprofit with 40 affiliate organizations, more than 800 individual chapters, over a million volunteers, and almost 1,000 staff members − including officer and a board of directors.
As recently as 2018, their indexed national sponsor page, showed that the ADA accepted money from Dannon Yogurt, Pure Via Stevia, and Equal Sweetener, all of which contain artificial sweeteners, known widely to be one of the most deadly consumer products. "Millionaire from Being Poor: A Reasonable Way for Average People to Become Wealthy and Become Healthy Lasting Until Your 90's" is one of many resources that have published this truth, explaining how the ADA is recommending the use of Aspartame (see Aspartame Controversy), widely known and proven to cause the disease itself. Furthermore, the ADA's suggested recipes often contain fat-free products, which require preservatives and other dangerous additives even though it is widely understood that a high fat diet does not contribute to diabetes. One of the authorities fighting ADA's tactics is Cardiologist, Dr. William Davis.
In the early 2000's, the ADA struck a three-year, $1.5 million sponsorship deal with Cadbury-Schweppes, the world’s largest confectioner where the heart logo would be found on its many products including Diet-Rite sodas, Snapple unsweetened tea and Mott’s Apple Sauce.
According to a New York Times article, "critics say the A.D.A. affiliation has helped the candy maker pose as a concerned corporate citizen, even as it supplies grocery stores with sugary and fattening foods like Dr Pepper and the Cadbury Creme Egg." One of the highest profile defenders of these toxic partnerships is D. Richard Kahn who skates around obvious health facts including whether metabolic syndrome exists, rejects preventative health measures, which was critiqued by Harvard physicians, also exemplified in the [https://freakonomics.com/podcast/sugar-rebroadcast/ Freakonomics podcast. who now sits on the board for Building Healthier America, affecting national policy.
Funding and spending
In 2017, the ADA's total revenue was $150 million − approximately 70% of which was from corporate and private contributions and grants while the remaining 30% from sales and investments. In addition, the ADA also encourages supporters to organize “Do-It-Yourself” fundraisers in the form of local events, such as a game night or community walk.
In 2017, the ADA spent $49 million on research, $49 million on information, $31 million on advocacy and public awareness, $10.7 million on management, and $35.8 million on fundraising.
The most highly compensated 26 individuals of the ADA received $6.2 million (an average of $240,000 each).
The ADA aims to give individuals with diabetes access to the care they need to optimize their health. To work towards achieving this mission, the organization places effort into funding research projects that help minority groups navigate diabetes. The ADA works with various colleges, local governments, and companies to promote healthy lifestyles. They also fund research looking to control risk factors associated with diabetes, as seen in a recently published article discussing the role of microglia immune cells in diet-induced obesity.
Advocacy efforts in policy, law, and education
The ADA has had several accomplishments in the policy arena, including gathering advocates at Call to Congress (a lobbying event on Capitol Hill) to raise awareness for ADA's legislative priorities, calling for regulations on insulin prices, and helping to improve Medicare's coverage policy for the National Diabetes Prevention Program. On the legal front, the ADA has supported appellate litigation regarding employer discrimination of employees with diabetic conditions, including cases involving both government employers (Atkins v. Salazar) and private companies (Darnell v. Thermafiber).
The ADA has provided diabetes education to the workforce of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), raised funding for diabetes prevention programs throughout the United States, and taken steps to prevent diabetes discrimination through developing materials on the care of students with diabetes to be used in educational institutions. Additionally, the ADA holds events for local diabetic community, including programs such as "Step Out" that support walk events to stop diabetes.
- Diabetes UK
- Diabetes Australia-NSW
- Centers for Disease Control
- National Diabetes Education Program
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- Atkins v. Salazar, 677 F.3d 667 (5th Cir. 2012).
- Darnell v. Thermafiber, 417 F.3d 657 (7th Cir. 2005).
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