New study finds large increase in youth diabetes
The U.S. is currently in the midst of a large battle with diabetes, and it is turning into a health epidemic that needs to be taken seriously.
The U.S. is currently in the midst of a large battle with diabetes, and it is turning into a health epidemic that needs to be taken seriously. According to the American Diabetes Association, around 215,000 people under the age of 20 are currently living in the U.S. with the disease, and 1 and 3 American adults are projected by have developed diabetes by the year 2050 if current health trends continue.
In a study conducted by colleagues with the organization SEARCH for Diabetes in Youth Study, the prevalence of diabetes within America's youth has increased dramatically within the past decade. Analyzing data from more than 3 million children and adolescents from all across the U.S., the researchers carefully examined the rapid development of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes in the youth from 2001 to 2009, while also attempting to interpret what health factors could be playing into the expansion of diabetes risk.
The occurrence of Type 1 diabetes in children and adolescents aged 0 to 19 started at a ratio of 1.48 per 1,000 children who were diagnosed with the disease in 2001 and eventually grew to 1.93 per 1,000 in 2009, which translates into a 21 percent increase in only an eight year duration. Another example of a huge increase in diagnoses of the disease was with Type 2 diabetes within 10 to 19 year olds, who were discovered to have endured a 30.5 percent increase between 2001 and 2009.
Dr. Dana Dabelea, a professor at the Colorado School of Public Health and lead contributor to the study, collaborated with the other authors to stress the importance of educating our youth about the health risks of diabetes and what measures can be taken to ensure the disease is avoided.
"Understanding changes in prevalence according to population subgroups is important to inform clinicians about care that will be needed for the pediatric population living with diabetes and may provide direction for other studies designed to determine the causes of the observed changes," the authors stated in a press release. "Youth with diabetes will enter adulthood with several years of disease duration, difficulty in treatment and increased frequency of diabetes during reproductive years, which may further increase diabetes in the next generation."
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