When children are diagnosed with diabetes - it's usually assumed to be Type 1, or juvenile onset diabetes. But Type 2 which is normally associated with adults is becoming increasingly common among kids.
A diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes means your body is having issues with insulin. Freeman Diabetes Educator Bethany Doak says, "The pancreas is still making insulin but there may not be enough insulin, that can be one of the problems but there also is the problem of the cells not responding to it appropriately."
And in the past two decades, doctors have been seeing more and more cases in very young patients. She adds, "Kids have been more sedentary. Um, just, there tends to be more overweight kids. And I think Type 2 diabetes isn't really considered among children unless there are um unless they are overweight and have some of the other risk factors." Those include a family history of Type 2 or a mom who had gestational diabetes. Certain ethnic groups are also at a higher risk.
But you can make changes to delay the onset of symptoms. Says Doak, "Being active, choosing healthy foods, trying to eat well balanced meals with more fruits and vegetables and fiber things like that versus lots of sugary drinks and empty calories that don't really fill you up."