Many Teens Are Prediabetic

JANUARY 01, 2006

A recent government report stated that nearly 2 million youths aged 12 to 19 years have prediabetes. A study, reported in Pediatrics (November 7, 2005), used the American Diabetes Association criteria that define the condition, called impaired fasting glucose (IFG), as blood sugar levels of at least 100 mg/dL. Levels above 125 mg/dL are considered diabetes.

Of the nationally representative sample, 1 in 14 boys and girls had IFG. In the overweight group, 1 in 6 teens had the condition. Adolescents with IFG were more likely to have other symptoms hinting that they may be on the path to heart problems, such as higher levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides, compared with participants with normal fasting glucose levels. The findings are based on data involving 915 adolescents who participated in a 1999-2000 national health survey.