Type II diabetes increases in young adults and children

CAMMIE BAGLEY
Athens/Living Editor

Type II Diabetes is a disease that, 20 years ago, was known to primarily affect elderly people. However, today, there is a growing number of young people developing the disease.

Both types of diabetes affect one’s ability to produce insulin. Type I is most commonly known as “juvenile” diabetes and is something that a child is diagnosed with at a young age, which cannot be prevented. Type II is developed later in life, but it is now being diagnosed much earlier, according to clinical.diabetesjournals.org. Neither types are curable but can be treated by medicine and with a close watch on one’s diet.

This growing epidemic of young people developing Type II Diabetes is a concern for those in the medical field and many parents, according to clinical.diabetesjournals.org. Some reasons that American youth are developing the disease are due to insulin resistance and b-cell failure, which relates to the issue of obesity. It was found in a study conducted by the American Diabetes Association that most children or young adults who are diagnosed have a family member that also has Type II Diabetes.

Aside from the common concerns about being diabetic, such as kidney disease, foot problems and high blood pressure, there is even more to worry about with young adults who develop the disease. Youth who are diabetic experience much more rapid progression and severe complications that can’t be adequately treated by the current treatment options, according to diabetes.org. These issues specifically involve developing early onset kidney, heart and eye diseases.

In a study conducted by the American Diabetes Association, it was found that over the last decade, obesity has increased by 70 percent in American adults ages 18-29, and in turn, Type Two Diabetes has increased by 70 percent in adults ages 30-39.

This epidemic is growing rapidly in the U.S. In order to prevent it, Americans must become aware and proactive about preventing childhood obesity, according to diabetes.org. For more information on Diabetes and how to prevent it, visit the American Diabetes Association today at diabetes.org.