Rate of youth diabetes increases by 95%

Published: Aug. 27, 2021 at 4:21 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Troubling findings from a recent study shows that youth cases of type 2 diabetes has increased drastically over the last few years in United States.

Just over one in 10 Americans has been diagnosed with diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

A Reuters study reports an alarming finding: the rate of young people ages 10 to 19 with type 2 diabetes increased by 95% from 2001 to 2017.

“I’ve been working at Sanford for over 20 years in the diabetes area and we’ve had an average of nine to 12 new onsets every year. Last year we had 11 for the whole 12 months. This year, it’s just the end of August and we’ve already had 24,” said Sanford Health Bismarck Diabetes Program Manager Donna Amundson.

Doctors say a sedentary lifestyle and becoming overweight contributes to the striking increase.

“The pandemic certainly has not helped with that. If the child has a strong family history of type 2 and they’re overweight and they’re not getting enough exercise-- their risk for type 2 diabetes goes up as well,” said Amundson.

Eighty-eight million American adults, or about 1 in 3 people, have prediabetes.

But, it’s preventable.

“There are a lot of studies that show that if people can lose as much as five to seven percent of their body weight, they can actually delay or prevent altogether diabetes,” said Amundson.

Health experts have lowered the age of recommended screening for type 2 diabetes from 40 to 35 for overweight patients.

This way, the condition can be found and treatment can start sooner.

Amundson says the best thing to do is make sure you live an active lifestyle and eat healthy.

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