Health | National

Indian youth make up largest segment of new diabetes cases

American Indian and Alaska Native youth made up 86 percent of new diabetes cases, the largest percentage of any racial or ethnic group, according to a new study.

Type 2 diabetes has been showing up in young Americans of all groups. But Native youth continue to be affected disproportionately by the disease, which is preventable.

"It would be much better if these kids didn't get diabetes in the first place," Phil Zeitler, a pediatrician who led the study, told The Wall Street Journal. "It's a bad disease when they get it."

Diabetes continues to be a major problem among Native Americans of all ages. According to the data, 16.1 percent of the adult patients within the Indian Health Service suffered from the disease.

In comparison, 7.1 percent of Whites, 8.4 percent of Asian Americans, 11.8 percent of Hispanics, and 12.6 percent of African-Americans were diagnosed with diabetes, according to the study.

Get the Story:
Obesity-Linked Diabetes in Children Resists Treatment (The New York Times 4/30)
No Easy Cure for Diabetic Children (The Wall Street Journal 4/30)

Get the Study:
National Diabetes Statistics, 2011 (April 2011)