Prediabetes Afflicting One-Fourth of Young Adults

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“A tremendously worrisome threat to the future of our nation’s health,” says CDC official.

About a quarter of young adults in the U.S. met the criteria for prediabetes in recent years, according to new CDC data.

In a cross-sectional analysis of the 2005-2016 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 24% of individuals ages 19 to 34 were considered to have prediabetes (95% CI 22.0%-26.1%), reported Linda Andes, PhD, of the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues.

This issue also afflicted younger Americans, as about 18% of adolescents from ages 12 to 18 met the criteria for prediabetes (95% CI 16.0%-20.1%), the group wrote in JAMA Pediatrics.

“The prevalence of prediabetes in adolescents and young adults reinforces the critical need for effective public health strategies that promote healthy eating habits, physical activity, and stress management,” explained CDC director Robert Redfield, MD, in a statement. “These lifestyle behaviors can begin early in a child’s life and should continue through adolescence and adulthood to reduce onset of type 2 diabetes.”

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