Fiji’s youngest type 2 diabetes patient is 11 yrs old.
This was revealed by National Advisor For Non Communicable Disease Dr Isimeli Tukana this week.
Tukana says that this is a new drift from what medical studies have always found that the usual Type 2 diabetes affects adults only.
” The common is type 1, where the organ that deals with diabetes is the pancreas, and the hormone or the chemical that controls glucose in the blood is insulin. So in type 1 diabetes over chidlren are born having none of those insulin they will need insulin all of their lives” .
Tukana explained that the transition from type 1 to type 2 diabetes for children is not a good sign.
” Its definitely shifting to the left, and more and more younger children are getting what we call Maturity Onset diabetes. Your suppose to get it at an old age, but now its happening at a younger age. So thats a dangerous scenario, more dangerously is the signs and risk factor we say in children. One of the big ones that WHO has just mentioned and the Pacific is not excluded from it is obesity in children”.
He added that the W.H.O has come up with a program called Elimination of Child Health Obesity or ECHO for short. He says that this is a risk factor for Adult obesity, that has caused the shift Fijian children are experiencing.