The number of young people suffering from type two diabetes is nearly ten times higher than previously thought, new analysis reveals. Type 2 diabetes used to be virtually unknown in young people. It usually develops over the age of 40 in white Europeans, or after the age of 25 in people who are African-Caribbean, black African, or South Asian. Diabetes UK reported that 6,836 children and young adults have Type 2 diabetes in England and Wales, according to data from GP surgeries.
What is Type 2 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes is a serious, lifelong condition where the insulin your pancreas makes can’t work properly, or your pancreas can’t make enough insulin.
Diabetes UK warned that thousands of more children and young people could be diagnosed with the condition over the coming years, as the latest figures on childhood obesity show that more than a third of children in England will be overweight or obese by the time they leave primary school.
Health & Wellbeing
We believe everyone should enjoy the benefits of good health and wellbeing
YMCA North Staffordshire provides health and wellbeing facilities, including a gym, sports halls, and outdoor activities. We actively work with young people and families in the community where we promote healthy and active lives.
Six tips from Dr. David Cavan, the UK’s leading expert on diabetes self-management and author of Reverse Your Diabetes: The Step-by-Step Plan to Take Control of Type 2 Diabetes.
- Limit yourself to two standard alcoholic drinks a day. Alcohol is high in calories and can lead to weight gain and increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Moderate alcohol intake is associated with reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. Cider, sweet wines and some beers are best avoided as they can have high sugar or carbohydrate content.
- Drink water, coffee or tea instead of fruit juice and fizzy drinks. Sugar-sweetened beverages increase the risk of type 2 diabetes including fruit juices and smoothies. Caffeine may be beneficial but only as unsweetened tea or coffee – not a latte or cappuccino.
- Eat at least three servings of green leafy vegetables every day. These contain vitamins, fibre and are very low in calories. Starchy vegetables, such as potatoes are best eaten in moderation as they can have a similar effect as sugar in leading to a rapid rise in blood glucose. Eating more than three pieces of fruit a day does not appear to protect from type 2 diabetes.
- Snack on a piece of fruit, a handful of nuts or unsweetened yoghurt. They’re low in sugar, as opposed to biscuits, chocolate bars and cakes which are high in sugar, fat and calories.
- Choose poultry, fish or lean cuts of white meat. Red and processed meats are associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes and some cancers. Meals prepared with fresh, unprocessed meat are preferable to ready-made or ‘fast food’ meals.
- Buy whole-grain bread, rice and pasta. White bread and white rice are turned into glucose rapidly; excess consumption of white rice is associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes.