Beating the Genetics of Diabetes
Q: I have a strong family history of type II diabetes and I feel like I'm
doomed to repeat it. I am 35 years old. Is there anything I can do to change
Dr. Donnica: You are right to be concerned. Family history is one of the
biggest risk factors for type II diabetes. But genetics isn't destiny in this
case; reducing other risk factors could help you prevent diabetes altogether.
Here's how you can do your best to prevent diabetes:
- Get tested to make sure you don't already have type II diabetes without
- Maintain a healthy weight. You may want to eat as though you already have
the condition! The American Diabetic Association (ADA) recommends weight management
through a low-fat diet and exercise to improve one's response to insulin.
They also recommend reducing calories, which can help people with diabetes
maintain more stable blood glucose; restricting fat, which has been shown
to lead to longer-term weight loss; consuming no more than 20% of calories
from protein; and consuming less than 10% of total calories from saturated
- Get at least 20 minutes of aerobic exercise 5 times per week.
Created: 1/10/2004  - Donnica Moore, M.D.