What Are the Risk Factors for Type 2 Diabetes?

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More than 60,000 new cases of type 2 diabetes are documented in Canada each year, making it one of the fastest growing diseases in the country. Though this may concern many family caregivers in Mississauga, knowing the risk factors for this condition may help prevent your loved one from developing it.

Inactivity

As people get older, they tend to become less active. This can lead to obesity and a slower metabolism, which can increase the risk of developing diabetes. Encouraging your loved one to remain as physically active as possible can help him or her maintain a healthy weight, use more glucose as energy, and make the body more sensitive to the insulin produced.

Abdominal Fat

Seniors who carry extra weight around the belly instead of the hips and thighs are more likely to develop diabetes. This is because excess abdominal fat is often linked to impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance. You can help your loved one reduce the risk of developing diabetes by encouraging him or her to engage in regular physical activity and to eat a healthy diet high in lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables.

Family History

Seniors with a parent or sibling who has diabetes are more likely to develop the disease themselves. Even though family history cannot be changed, you can still reduce your loved one’s risk by ensuring he or she receives regular medical checkups, including blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar checks.

Abnormal Cholesterol

Studies show a significant link between abnormal cholesterol levels and diabetes. Glucose tends to attach to LDL, also known as “bad” cholesterol. This allows the LDL to remain in the body longer, which can lead to higher glucose levels and the formation of plaque in the arteries. This plaque is what causes heart disease and strokes. People with diabetes also tend to have low HDL, or “good” cholesterol, and high triglycerides, which raises the cardiovascular risk even further. You can help your loved one by ensuring he or she gets regular cholesterol screenings, eats a diet low in saturated fat and high in fruits and vegetables, and gets exercise at least three times a week.

Seniors at risk of developing type 2 diabetes can benefit from the helping hand of a professional caregiver. At Home Care Assistance, our caregivers can help your loved one stay as healthy as possible by assisting with exercise, nutritious meal prep, and transportation to medical appointments. For more information on senior home care Mississauga families trust, please call one of our qualified Care Managers at (905) 337-1200 to schedule a free in-home consultation.