Healthy Lifestyles: Type 2 Diabetes Prevention

Diabetes affects the way the body can process glucose in the blood. About 29 million Americans have diabetes, meaning that about one in 10 people suffer from the disease. Diabetes is also the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. Those who develop diabetes must deal with the disease for the rest of their lives, meaning that prevention is the only way to reduce the rates of type 2 diabetes. There are several different risk factors for diabetes, including genes, excess weight, excess glucose in the liver, and inefficient communication between certain cells in the body. Diabetes is also the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S.

Causes of Type 2 Diabetes

Genetics can play a big role in the development of diabetes. However, behavioral and lifestyle factors make up the biggest influences on development of the disease. Data from several studies has found that five main factors are related to about 90 percent of type 2 diabetes cases. These five factors include being overweight, not getting enough exercise, an unhealthy diet, smoking, and alcohol consumption. Obesity especially can result in insulin resistance. Increases in childhood obesity have also raised concerns about increasing numbers of younger individuals affected by diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes Prevention

Type 2 diabetes is highly preventable by avoiding the risk factors and working towards healthier lifestyles. For example, a study by the Diabetes Prevention Program looked at how weight loss and exercise affected the development of type 2 diabetes among people who were at risk for developing diabetes but hadn’t yet developed the disease. After three years, they found 58 percent fewer cases of development of diabetes in the group assigned to exercise and weight loss than in the control group. There are several things each individual can do for diabetes prevention.

  • Avoiding excess weight or losing weight greatly reduces diabetes rates. In fact, being obese gives a you a 20 to 40 times increased likelihood of developing diabetes.
  • Exercising regularly makes it easier for the body to absorb glucose and use insulin.
  • Having a healthy diet is an important part of diabetes prevention. Try to reduce things like refined grains and sugary foods and drinks, which have a high glycemic index. Instead, eat more whole grains like brown rice and whole grain bread.

Type 2 Diabetes Testing

ARCpoint Labs offers tests that determine if you are pre-diabetic or diabetic. We also provide lab tests to assist in managing the disease if you already have it. Locate your nearest ARCpoint Labs location today.

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