My child is overweight and her doctor says she's at risk of type 2 diabetes. Are there steps we can take to lower her risk?
Answer From Sara J. Carlson, R.N., C.D.E.
Yes. Parents can do a lot to help their children prevent type 2 diabetes. Make it a family affair. Healthy changes become habits more easily when everyone does them together.
Here are some tips to get you started:
June 09, 2020
- Get more active. Go for walks, play ball or go to the park. Children need at least 60 minutes of activity a day.
- Manage weight. If your child is overweight, losing weight may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Cut back on sugar. Limit sugar-sweetened drinks and juice.
- Offer healthy snacks. Focus on vegetables, fruits and whole grains.
- Limit screen time. That includes TVs, computers, tablets and phones.
- Eat dinner as a family. Keep the TV turned off.
- See a dietitian. Some grocery chains have a dietitian to help you at no charge.
See more Expert Answers
- AskMayoExpert. Type 2 diabetes mellitus (child). Mayo Clinic; 2019.
- Prevent type 2 diabetes in kids. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/features/prevent-diabetes-kids/index.html. Accessed May 11, 2018