Preventing Your Child From Developing Type 2 Diabetes

There are two types of diabetes, and children are at risk for both. Type 2 diabetes is by far the most common form. In type 1 diabetes, the immune system mistakenly attacks insulin-secreting cells in the pancreas, resulting in a lack of insulin. 

Rates of both types of diabetes rose in children over the past 20 years, and while there’s no way to prevent type 1 diabetes, you can take steps to reduce your child’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes. 

The team at Lauren Pediatric & Teen Medical Center are devoted to helping your child stay healthy and happy. We understand the medical needs of children and are here to guide your child every step of the way. Type 2 diabetes is a growing concern. Keep reading to find out how you can protect your child. 

Why is type 2 diabetes a concern for children?

Previously known as adult-onset diabetes, more and more children are being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Children and youth ages 10-19 are most at risk. Type 2 diabetes is still rarely diagnosed in children younger than age 10. 

Type 2 diabetes develops over time, which is why it’s more commonly diagnosed in adults. Unfortunately, this chronic condition is now a concern in children. 

Health consequences of type 2 diabetes

Young people with type 2 diabetes may experience several symptoms in the short term if their condition is not managed. These symptoms include:

If not managed early on, type 2 diabetes can cause serious health problems. 

Reducing your child’s risk of type 2 diabetes 

Sticking with the basics of movement, nutritious eating, and maintaining a healthy weight are the best ways to cut your child’s chances of developing type 2 diabetes. 

Limit sweets

Keep an eye on the added sugars you allow your child to have. Growing children need an abundance of nutrients for proper growth and development. Skip sugar-laden beverages and packaged foods high in added sugar. The eating habits you establish for your child now will last a lifetime. 

Encourage exercise

With the advent of mobile technology and the reduction of school programs involving physical fitness, today’s children are much less active on average. It’s wise to limit time spent with video games, computers, tvs, and cell phones, and encourage fun physical activities.

Whether you enroll your child in a sport or get the whole family together for hikes and bike rides, what’s most important is that you get your child moving. A sedentary lifestyle is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes. 

Pack meals with nutrition

Fortunately, parents are in control of what your kids eat. Focus on loading your child up with fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean protein. A well-balanced diet slashes the risk of type 2 diabetes, helps maintain a healthy weight, and promotes overall good health. 

Partner with a pediatrician

Well child visits give our providers the opportunity to track your child’s health and alert you when something is amiss. This way you can take action before problems start or worsen. Pediatric physicians are your best source in keeping your child healthy. 

To schedule a well child visit, contact our friendly, and knowledgeable team or book online today. Your child’s future is in your hands.

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