Is Diabetes Hereditary?

Diabetes Hereditary

Is Diabetes Inherited?

If you have a family history with Diabetes, then you may be curious to know if you can get Diabetes in the coming years. This article will answer some of your questions. 

Can diabetes be passed down in the genes?  

If a person has a history of diabetes in his family, he may have a higher risk of developing the same condition. Genetic factors will make people prone to some types of diabetes. However, a person may not inherit the condition, and there could be ways to reduce the risk. Knowing how genes, lifestyle, and the environment affect diabetes can encourage a person to minimize the risk of developing the condition and its complications.  

Is Type 1 Diabetes hereditary?  

Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease and it occurs when the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells. This type often appears during adolescence, though a person can develop it at any age.  

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People having Type 1 Diabetes may have autoimmune antibodies in their blood for many years before showing symptoms. The condition may develop over time, or therey may be something to activate the autoimmune antibodies before symptoms appear. After this triggering, symptoms may appear quickly, within days or weeks.  

Is Type 2 Diabetes hereditary?  

Apart from family history, other factors increase the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, includes the following: 

  • an age of 45 years or older 
  • excess weight, a high body mass index (BMI), or obesity 
  • a lifestyle that involves limited physical activity 
  • high levels of fat and cholesterol in blood 
  • high blood pressure 
  • polycystic ovary syndrome, which many know as PCOS 
  • a history of gestational diabetes that occurs during pregnancy 
  • a history of cardiovascular disease
  • Depression  

However, people with risk factors beyond age, such as obesity, will need to start screening earlier. A doctor can advise about the best strategy for each person. Sometimes screening shows that a person has pre-diabetes.   

Genes associated with the risk of Type 2 Diabetes, includes the following: 

  • TCF7L2, that affects insulin secretion and glucose production 
  • ABCC8, that helps regulate insulin 
  • CAPN10, that is associated with Type 2 Diabetes risk in Mexican-Americans 
  • GLUT2, that helps move glucose into the pancreas 
  • GCGR, a glucagon hormone which is involved in glucose regulation  

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