Teen Report: Diabetes

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Experts say more than one million Americans are diagnosed with juvenile, or type I diabetes. Now, type II diabetes is on the rise.

On a spring evening, a group of kids are enjoying a game of ball, but experts say too often kids don't get enough exercise and eventually become obese, and that can eventually lead to some teens having diabetes for life.

Nancy Smith, a clinical dietician at the TMH Diabetes Center, says, "Type II diabetes can be largely prevented by being much more physically active, and it’s been recommended not to spend more than an hour or two a day at the very maximum in front of a screen, whether it’s a TV screen, video game, the Game Boy, the computer screen."

Adela Mitchell, a nurse at the TMH Diabetes Center, also says, "Diet is not going to do it. Exercise is very important. It helps the body be less resistant to insulin so it works better, and of course, with exercise you burn calories, build muscle, and when you have more muscle and less fat cells, your body works better with insulin."

And to help the body work better, the Boys and Girls Club has developed a program to keep kids active.

Tank Ackerman says, "This new program will help with the physical fitness education and also help develop healthy lifestyles."

It’s a healthy lifestyle that could help prevent diabetes but also lower the risk of heart disease and stroke, ensuring a long healthy life.

Experts are encouraging families to be involved in developing healthy eating habits for their kids, as well as an exercise program to help ward off obesity and diabetes.