Preventing type 2 diabetes by cutting obesity levels in teenagers is vital to ensuring that the health service is not put under further strain in the future, new research has shown.
A major US study found that a large proportion of teenagers who develop diabetes as a result of putting on too much weight struggle to control their condition, meaning that prevention of Type 2 diabetes in the first place is the most effective way of tackling the problem.
The research tested various ways of controlling blood sugar in teenagers newly diagnosed with the condition and found that almost half of them failed within a few years and a fifth of them suffered serious complications.
One of the study leaders, Dr Phil Zeitler of the University of Colorado Denver, said: “Don’t get diabetes in the first place.”
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body cannot make enough insulin, which controls the amount of sugar in the blood. This is more likely to occur in teenagers who are overweight or obese.