Are You at Risk for Type 2 Diabetes? Learn Common—and Not So Common—Risk Factors
Diabetes is not a rare condition – in fact, it’s an epidemic in the U.S. More than 30 million Americans have type 2 diabetes and another 84 million have prediabetes, a condition of elevated blood sugar levels that often leads to type 2.
Why do so many Americans have type 2 diabetes? Experts say this major public health problem is due to an aging population, increasing obesity rates and rising sedentary lifestyles.
But it’s largely a preventable epidemic and you can offset your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by understanding common—and some not-so-common —type 2 diabetes risk factors, such as:
You’ve probably heard that being overweight raises your risk. But it’s not really about the number on the scale, it’s about your body composition. If you have higher body fat percentage, your cells may be less sensitive to insulin. Being overweight and/or living a sedentary lifestyle tend to raise your body fat percentage.
However, even if you’re at a healthy weight, you’re not necessarily off the hook. You can still be at risk if you’re metabolically obese at normal weight—more commonly known as “skinny fat.” When you’re metabolically obese, you have a normal weight but are out of shape and have low muscle mass.
Aging is also tied to this risk factor. As you age, your metabolism and physical activity levels typically slow, causing you to gain fat mass. This is why the risk for type 2 diabetes begins rising after age 45.
Eating healthy and strength training can help maintain a healthy body composition. Talk to your doctor before beginn Continue reading