The Pima Indians are natives of Mexico who live a very rustic lifestyle, without electricity and running water and often walking long distances to get drinking water or to wash clothes. This Indian culture works hard for their food as they cultivate corn, beans, potatoes, squash and other fruits and vegetables.
Another group of Pima Indians decided to move to Arizona many years ago and have become the subjects of ongoing studies into diabetes and obesity. Unlike their relatives across the border for whom obesity and diabetes is rare, most of the Arizona Pimas suffer with type II diabetes and 70% are obese. This has been entirely attributed to their adoption of the standard American lifestyle.
What Role Does Genetics Play?
The Pimas have genetics that predispose them to diabetes and obesity. However, given the difference between the Mexican Pimas and the Arizona Pimas, clearly the more important factor is lifestyle. This is demonstrated when researchers put the Arizona Prima on a more traditional diet and lifestyle and found that they lost significant amounts of weight.
What Causes Diabetes??
This question has been answered in the research literature. According to the U.S. Government’s Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of the individuals who had diabetes 69% did not exercise at all, 62% ate few vegetables or fruits, 65% consumed 30% of their daily calories from fat (10% from saturated fat) and 82% were significantly overweight or obese.
The answer to the great question “what causes type II diabetes” is “Our Choices”! For the most part; type II diabetes is optional.