Prediabetes - What Increases Your Risk
Things that can increase your chances of prediabetes
are called risk factors. Some risk factors you can control, and others you
The risk factors for prediabetes are similar to those for
type 2 diabetes. Most people who get type 2 diabetes
had prediabetes first. Risk factors include:
- Being overweight.
- Lack of physical activity.
- Family history.
If you have a parent, brother, or sister who has type 2 diabetes, you have a
greater chance of getting the disease.
- Age. The risk for getting prediabetes and
type 2 diabetes increases with age. But the number of
children with type 2 diabetes is increasing. Usually, children who
get type 2 diabetes have a family history of the disease, are overweight, and
aren't physically active.
- Race and ethnicity. African Americans,
Hispanics, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Pacific Islanders are at
higher risk than whites for type 2 diabetes.
- History ofgestational diabetes. Women who
have had gestational diabetes or who have had a baby that weighed more than
9 lb (4 kg) at birth are at
higher risk for type 2 diabetes later in life.
- Low birth weight. People who weighed less
than 5.5 lb (2.5 kg) at birth
are more likely to get type 2 diabetes later in
Other health problems that put you at risk for
prediabetes and type 2 diabetes include:
One Woman's Story:
With a family history of type 2 diabetes, Linda says she should have
watched her weight more carefully. She wasn't too surprised by her prediabetes
diagnosis. But she got motivated right away to do what she could about
"I watched my mom inject herself with insulin every day.
Sometimes she needed my help. She had the hardest time keeping her blood sugar
down and figuring out what to eat. I don't want to go down that road if I can
Read more about Linda.
Reducing your risk
There are some things you can do to reduce your chances
of getting prediabetes:
- Watch your weight. Being
overweight increases your risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
Your risk also increases if most of your
body fat is in your belly area . Losing even 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can reduce your risk.
- Make healthy food choices. Eating healthy food is one of the best things you can do for your
- Be active. The less you exercise,
the greater your risk of getting prediabetes and type 2
diabetes. The more active you are, the more
sugar (glucose) your body uses for energy. This keeps the sugar from building
up in your blood.
When you have prediabetes,
it's important to follow your treatment. This can reduce your risk of
prediabetes turning into type 2 diabetes.
For more tips about things you can do to reduce your risk, see Prevention.