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Adolescents in the UAE in Jeopardy of Developing Diabetes in Adulthood

, : In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), experts have warned that young are at an increased risk of acquiring Type 2 conditions in adulthood. Diabetes complications such as cardiovascular disease, kidney diseases and stroke are just some of the illnesses brought on by unhealthy diet and lack of exercise in adolescent years.  The US Guidelines for Adolescent Preventive Services suggest that from ages 11 to 21 all adolescents should have an annual routine health visit. Parents in the UAE are being advised to follow these recommendations.

Dr. Nayara Sarhan, Consultant Family Physician and Assistant Professor at the Arabian Gulf University in Bahrain will be speaking about ‘Handling Adolescents in Primary Care’ at the Family Medicine Conference taking place 14-16 October at the Abu Dhabi Medical Congress (ADMC) at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, UAE. She believes that it is essential for parents to take their adolescent children for regular health checkups in order to monitor any risks, either physically or psychologically, that could potentially lead to conditions such as Diabetes in their future.

“To make it more convenient for parents and healthcare providers, school students should be screened at least once in each adolescent period which includes early adolescents (aged 10-13 years), middle (aged 14-17 years), and in late adolescents (aged 17-19 years),” says Dr. Sarhan. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), overweight and obesity are increasing among young people in both low- and high-income countries. Adequate nutrition and healthy eating and physical exercise habits at this age are foundations for good health in adulthood.

According to Dr. Yasser Nakhlawi, Chair of the Pediatrics Institute, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, Abu Dhabi, UAE, who is also a speaker at the upcoming Family Medicine Conference, adolescents also develop eating disorders that affect their growth, development and sometimes even lead to morbidity.
“Statistics state that approximately 1% of girls between the ages 12-18 are anorexic, 1-3% of girls are bulimic, and approximately 20% are engaged in less severe unhealthy dieting,” explains Dr. Nakhlawi

From a nutritional perspective, three quarters of adolescents do not eat recommended portion sizes. Another observation with regards to adolescent’s physical activity was that the level dropped dramatically between children from grades nine to twelve. Organized by Informa Life Sciences Exhibition, the Abu Dhabi Medical Congress is the region’s key healthcare event bringing together leading international healthcare companies to showcase their latest products and services within the Emergency, Primary Healthcare, Patient Safety, Rehabilitation, and Dentistry sectors, as well as being a platform for scientific exchange via the accompanying multi-track conference program dedicated to these healthcare sectors. ADMC has expanded from 7,000 sqm in 2011 to more than 9,000 sqm this year, with more than 110 exhibitors from 25 different countries, 12 CME-Accredited conferences, and around 4,000 visitors.

For more information about the Family Medicine Conference, please visit

About Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions:

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About Arabian Gulf University:

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About Sheikh Khalifa Medical City:

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For media enquiries please contact:

Inga Stevens

Senior Communication Manager

Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions

T: +971 4 407 2743

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