The Connection Between Obesity
and Childhood Type 2 Diabetes

by Richard Rossbauer

  Childhood Type 2 diabetes and obesity are both epidemics sweeping across America. In the U.S. today, over 12.5 million children are overweight- that's 17.1 percent of those aged between 2 and 19 years.

  According to the U.S. Surgeon General, these overweight and obese children are more likely to experience cardiovascular health problems,
high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes than their thinner peers..

  To better understand it, we need answers to a few basic questions - starting with
"What is Type 2 diabetes?"

  Traditionally, when diabetes was detected during childhood, it was assumed to be juvenile-onset or Type 1 diabetes. However, in the past
20 years, more children are developing Type 2 and excessive weight gain is the root cause.

  Type 2 diabetes is caused when your body begins to develop a resistance to insulin and is no longer using insulin efficiently.

   Eventually, the pancreas loses its ability to produce insulin and can't regulate blood sugar levels properly.

   Is childhood Type 2 diabetes actually a major problem?

   According to the National Center for Chronic Disease prevention and Health Promotion, Type 2 diabetes for adolescents and children is on
the rise. Those most frequently diagnosed are between the ages of 10 and 19.
   It affects all ethnic groups, with the disease being more prevalent among non-white children. The groups hardest hit, according to the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, are American Indian Youths and Canadian First Nation peoples.

   What are the contributing factors to a childhood diagnosis of Type 2

   Based on information from the CDC (Center for Disease Control in
Atlanta), most of the children and adolescents diagnosed with Type 2
diabetes are obese, may be exposed to diabetes in utero, have poor
glycemic control and also have a strong family history of the disease.

Is childhood Type 2 diabetes difficult to detect?

   In children, it can go undetected for a lengthy period of time because
there is no evidence of symptoms, there may be mild symptoms, or
the younsters are unable to communicate many of the indicators they may notice. Therefore, blood tests are needed for an accurate diagnosis.
What is the best defense?
   A parent's best response to protect against and alleviate childhood
Type 2 diabetes and obesity is to provide a healthy diet combined
with frequent, daily exercise.

   Affected children should be on the move for a minimum of 20 to 40
minutes each day while avoiding processed foods high in sugar, salt,
and fat.

   According to the CDC, the best defense is maintaining a healthy body
weight and a low BMI or Body Mass Index. (Generally, BMI of 20 to 25
is considered healthy. BMI of less than 20 suggests an individual is
underweight while 25 to 29 indicates an overweight person. 30 and above is a sign of obesity).

   That solution may not appeal to a heavy child who is not
motivated to exert himself. However, the good news is that it offers
the child a level of control over the situation that drugs and other
medical solutions may not provide.
>>Read More on determining Childhood obesity here






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