Diabetes among Teenagers and Children

Although many incidences of type 2 diabetes are often diagnosed in people aged 40 years and above, children and teenagers are increasingly being diagnosed with this disease (Gordon, 2012). This paper seeks to understand the latest diagnostic trends and infection rates of Type 2 diabetes and the factors associated with the increased diagnosis of the disease among the teenagers and children. This study will also seek to explore the mechanism of intervention to reverse the alarming trends of diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes among children and teenagers. This would be achieved through empirical review of recent study findings on this type of diabetes.

Latest Findings on Type 2 Diabetes

According to the latest study conducted by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, approximately one out of four American adolescents develops Type 2 diabetes or is already diabetic. This finding demonstrates a sudden increase in the prevalence rate of the disease among children aged between 12 and 19 years (Gordon, 2012). The findings of the study indicate that this type of diabetes has increased by 21% from 2001 to 2009.

Risk Factors

Over 50% of teenagers and children suffering from obesity have a great risk of contracting cardiovascular diseases like high levels of cholesterol and high blood pressure. These increase the rate of pre-diabetes and diabetes among children and teenagers. The problem is further compounded by vulnerability of diabetic persons to heart diseases, stroke and kidney-related infections.

The new trends are a cause for alarm, especially with the findings indicating that even the normal-weight children are at risk. 37% of this category of children has at least one heart risk factor, especially given their consumption rates and levels of sugar and fat. Although high sugar levels might not affect the young generation immediately, the effects often track into adulthood and may cause further cardiovascular complications in later life.

Intervention Measures

Sustained weight loss ranging between 5 to 10 percent is recommended especially among the overweight and obese children and teenagers. Healthy eating habits should be promoted alongside the adoption of active lifestyle and dietary modifications, especially with emphasis on an increased uptake of grains and dietary fiber. The weight and blood sugar levels of such persons should also be regularly monitored to avert increased vulnerabilities.

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