Urban Children Type 1 Diabetes Increases 70%
Urban Children Type 1 Diabetes Increases 70%. Over the past two decades, the incidence of type 1 diabetes in very young children under age 5 has increased by 70 percent in the city of Philadelphia, according to research from a University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing researcher who currently maintains the only US registry of diabetes in children that has collected data continuously since 1985.
In a far-reaching study in Diabetes Care, researchers led by nursing professor Terri H. Lipman, PhD, RN found that the overall incidence of Type 1 diabetes in children in Philadelphia has increased by 29 percent over the same time period, 1985 to 2004.
The Most Rapid Increase
“The most rapid increase in type 1 diabetes — in children diagnosed before age 5 — requires immediate attention,” reports Dr. Lipman. “These young children are at the highest risk for death because of often-delayed diagnosis. The rapidly rising risk of diabetes in black children ages 0-4 years is of particular concern given the marked racial disparities that have been identified in diabetes outcomes and treatment in this population.”
The research draws on a unique data set from the Philadelphia Pediatric Diabetes Registry, which Dr. Lipman has maintained since 1985. The registry was a member of the World Health Organization’s Diabetes Mondiale study, a consortium of 150 centers in 70 countries. It is the only such U.S. registry still active and includes data amassed from large populations in three racial groups (white, black, and Hispanic). In the 20 years of the Philadelphia Pediatric Diabetes Registry, 935 cases of type 1 diabetes have been identified in children.
“The incidence of type 1 diabetes in Philadelphia children has increased at an average yearly rate of 1.5 percent,” said Dr. Lipman, who also holds an appointment at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “However, the incidence had been relatively stable over the first 15 years and has risen most markedly since 2000. This upward trend adds to the evidence of an increasing incidence of diabetes in the United States and worldwide.”
Racial and ethnic data demonstrated the incidence of type 1 diabetes in white children had historically been very stable, with approximately 13 children diagnosed per 100,000 annually. However, there was a 48 percent increase between 2000 and 2004. Similarly, Hispanic children had previously been very stable at 15.5 diagnosed children per 100,000 annually but had a 27 percent increase between 2000 and 2004.
No Confirmed Risk Factors
“While there are a number of hypotheses related to the causes of the increases in type 1 diabetes, no risk factors have been confirmed” said Dr. Lipman. “It is critical to continue to investigate risk factors that may be associated with the increased incidence of type 1 diabetes overall, and the marked rise in the incidence in young children.”
For the first time, researchers included cases of type 2 diabetes in the Philadelphia registry. The incidence of type 1 diabetes is 18 times higher than type 2 diabetes in white children, but only 1.6 times higher in black children, indicating a high incidence of type 2 diabetes in black children. Similar to other studies, the data from Dr. Lipman and her colleagues showed the incidence of type 2 diabetes was higher in females than males, highest in black youth, and lowest in non-Hispanic white youth.
“Type 1 diabetes continues to be the greatest risk for children in Philadelphia, three times greater than type 2 diabetes,” emphasized Dr. Lipman. “Improving and continuing research and data collection will help clarify the origins and epidemiology of these alarming worldwide trends in pediatric diabetes.”
The numbers are simply staggering and should be given more attention. We believe some combination of lifestyle, diet and environmental factors is triggering and driving this epidemic increase, and not just in the genetically predisposed. That is why we believe eliminating and mitigating as many of these factors is important – especially diet.
Our environment, internal and external, indoors and outdoors, has reached a point of inescapable concern. Taking healthy measures to minimize your exposure and keep your body’s detoxification systems functioning optimally can be of great benefit to long term health and blood sugar control.
In our downloadable, printable special report on the Environment, Diabetes and Health, we present evidence that demands action, and we give you the tools to take action by natural means. This is one of the five pillars in the Health-e-Solutions lifestyle that supports thriving health and better blood sugar control. Put your body in a position of strength by promoting, supporting and creating health. Get tools and solutions to help minimize consequences and maximize benefits for nutrition, environment, exercise, sleep and stress management.
Journal Reference: Terri H. Lipman, Lorraine E. Levitt Katz, Sarah J. Ratcliffe, Kathryn M. Murphy, Alexandra Aguilar, Iraj Rezvani, Carol J. Howe, Shruti Fadia, and Elizabeth Suarez. Increasing Incidence of Type 1 Diabetes in Youth: Twenty years of the Philadelphia Pediatric Diabetes Registry. Diabetes Care, January 22, 2013 DOI: 10.2337/dc12-0767