If you are researching a new diagnosis of diabetes or trying to lower your risk of developing the condition, it is important to understand its potential causes. The reasons some individuals are affected by diabetes and some are not is not totally understood, but many trends are clear to medical researchers.
The first of the factors that can cause diabetes is genetics. Type I and type II diabetes are both somewhat inherited, the latter seeming to be more so. Those with type II diabetes-affected family members are one-quarter more likely to develop diabetes.
The more relatives one has with type II diabetes, the more likely it is that one will develop the disorder. If one monozygotic twin has type II diabetes, the chances are one hundred percent that the other twin will as well.
Some other existing conditions that affect the pancreas may also be causes of diabetes. These conditions include myotonic dystrophy and hypogonadism. It is thought that perhaps exposure to some pollutants in the environment and chemicals in materials such as some plastics can increase the risk of diabetes.
The onset of diabetes can also be triggered by a viral infection such as Coxsackie B. Obesity is also a major risk factor for diabetes, as over half of those patients with type II diabetes are classified as obese. Obesity is found to be generally caused by a combination of genetics and lifestyle.
Poor diet, characterized by an inordinately high intake of carbohydrates and fat, eventually causes weight gain and interferes with insulin function and blood sugar levels. A greater instance of childhood obesity has resulted in a parallel rise in diabetes rates.
In addition to weight gain, natural aging and the accompanying stress and decrease in activity affect the metabolism, thereby increasing the odds of diabetes development.
Some other potential causes for diabetes exist, including mere pregnancy. For the most part, your best defense against a higher risk of diabetes is lifestyle management. The development of good eating and exercise habits can have a pronounced effect on the susceptibility of an individual to development of diabetes.