Are Structured Diets Helpful in Prediabetic Adolescents?

Today I wanted to share with you the results of a study on the role of structured diets in prediabetic adolescents conducted by an Australian research team, called RESIST. 

Prediabetic Adolescents type 2 diabetes
NORMAL or DANGEROUS    Type Your Blood sugar Level:    mg/dl

Actually, it is a randomized controlled trial involving the patients of two hospitals in Australia.

There is an increase in number of cases of prediabetes and insulin resistance in nowadays adolescents.

The medical team is determined to find out the causes why this increase and how to prevent the further changes to type 2 diabetes among adolescents.

Therefore, this research team conducted a six month trial, involving 111 adolescents, from 10 to 17 years old.They selected overweight (or obese) patients with prediabetes type 2 and/or those who were clinically diagnosed with insulin resistance.

The definition of pre-type-2-diabetes and insulin resistance in adolescents was settled according to ADA (American Diabetes Association).

Although metformin 250 mg was prescribed to the subjects twice daily for the first 2 weeks, and then, increased to 500 mg; they were invited to follow 2 structured diets:

1.       The first was a high carb-low-fat diet

 2.       The second was restrained in carbs and high in proteins.

Now, why did the researches start this study?

Because, other researches have evoked that increasing the proteins in an adult diet might have positive impact in losing weight and metabolic rates; while this effect was not analyzed in adolescents.

According to Dr.Garnett, one of the researchers, the emphasis was put on diminishing the energy intake. This intervention has led to weight loss and improvement of metabolic factors in the participants although such results were not satisfactory as compared to other studies in adults. 

Now, here I wanted to stop and let’s think over it:

As you may see, metformin alone cannot do the magic. Introducing a structured diet and a good exercising program has made the difference for these children.

Therefore, finding the right dietary strategy is one of the KEY factors against the battle to not let your prediabetic child direct to type 2 diabetes.  Do not stay at a corner and wait for the drugs do the miracle.

Take action! Work with your child’s doctor to find out the right dietary strategy for your child, and for your pocket. According to the current study research, Dr. Te Morgena, the high protein diets are excellent for some subjects who can afford it.

However, other moderate-to-low income families might find it difficult to follow. In addition, people are of all colors; their cultural and traditional habits too. This might also restrict the following of such high in proteins diets.

So, although these restrictions, you must understand that your child can get helped not only with drugs use, but an overall approach, including the therapeutic lifestyle and diet changes.

Hope you got the idea!


Last medically reviewed 01/02/2019


  • Garnett, Sarah P., et al. "Optimal Macronutrient Content of the Diet for Adolescents With Prediabetes; RESIST a Randomised Control Trial." Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (2013).
Ask Diabetes Questions and get a reply from a real medical doctor

New! Comments

Ask A question Or Leave a comment.