According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 25% of the people in the U.S. who have Type 2 diabetes do not know it. Men are more likely to go undiagnosed, simply because many of them do not schedule routine check-ups with their doctor. But sixty seconds can make a difference in your health. The Diabetes Risk Test, offered by the American Diabetes Association, is an anonymous questionnaire that can reveal your risk for developing Type 2 diabetes in one minute. The American Diabetes Association developed the test so that you can take it yourself or on behalf of someone you love.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, and with increasing rates of childhood obesity, adults and children are both at risk. Over time, diabetes can affect many parts of the body and lead to other health problems like heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, nerve damage, and circulation problems that may lead to amputation. New evidence shows that people with Type 2 diabetes are also at a greater risk for Alzheimer’s disease.
The good news is you can prevent or delay some of the complications by acting quickly.
The Diabetes Risk Test asks seven questions related to the risk factors for Type 2 diabetes. Some of the risk factors you can’t change, such as:
- Age: As you get older, your risk for diabetes increases. One in four people over the age of 60 have diabetes.
- Gender: Men are at a higher risk of having Type 2 Diabetes, but so are women who had diabetes during their pregnancy (gestational diabetes).
- Race and Ethnicity: Certain racial and ethnic groups, such as African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and Native Americans are more likely to develop diabetes.
- Family history: If you had a parent, brother or sister who had diabetes, your risk increases.
Other risk factors relate to lifestyle choices that influence your risk.
- Weight: The risk of having Type 2 diabetes increases as you get heavier.
- Physical Activity: People who are inactive and/or overweight have an increased risk for diabetes.
- Blood Pressure: Having high blood pressure also contributes to your risk.
Knowing your risk for Type 2 diabetes is the first step to taking control of your health. Take the Diabetes Risk test. If your risk level is high, follow up with your health care provider. If there are lifestyle changes to lower your risk, start today. Making a few small changes can have a big impact on your weight and your health.