What are the risk factors for diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is what is known as a ‘multifactorial disease’, meaning that genetic, biomedical, and environmental factors contribute to risk for the disease. Risk factors can be divided into two groups, modifiable and non-modifiable. You can’t change non-modifiable risk factors such as genetics, family history, ethnicity, sex and age. However, modifiable risk factors such as diet, physical activity and BMI can be changed and can help you delay the onset of or prevent type 2 diabetes.

Some risk factors for diabetes are listed as follows:



Males are more likely than females to develop diabetes.



Adults who are age 45 or older have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.



For Asians, a BMI of over 23 kg/m2 increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


Physical inactivity

You have a higher risk of diabetes if you are not physically active. (maybe aktivo here)


Dietary fibre intake

A low dietary fibre intake increases your risk of developing diabetes.



Smokers are 30-40% more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than non-smokers.



Heavy drinking, which is defined as consuming eight drinks or more per week for women and 15 or more for men, can reduce the body’s sensitivity to insulin.


Family history of diabetes

The risk of type 2 diabetes increases if your parent or sibling has type 2 diabetes.



Prediabetes is a condition in which your blood sugar level is higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. Prediabetes often progresses to type 2 diabetes if left untreated.


Gestational Diabetes

If you developed gestational diabetes when you were pregnant, your risk of developing type 2 diabetes increases. If you gave birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds (4 kilograms), you're also at risk of type 2 diabetes.


High blood pressure

Hypertension has been reported to be a significant predictor of type 2 diabetes.


Blood lipid levels

If you have low HDL cholesterol, high LDL cholesterol, or high triglyceride levels, you have an increased risk for diabetes.


Polycystic ovary syndrome

For women, having polycystic ovarian syndrome — a common condition characterized by irregular menstrual periods, excess hair growth and obesity — increases the risk of diabetes.


Acanthosis Nigricans

Dark, thick, and velvety skin around your neck or armpits is often a sign of insulin resistance.



People of certain ethnicities including Asians, Indians, Africans and Hispanic people are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than Caucasians.