The aim of this study was to characterize the physical activity (PA) and electronic media (EM) use habits of a population-based, ascertained sample of youths with diabetes mellitus (DM).


For this investigation, the Search for Diabetes in Youth Case-Control study (age: 10–20 y; 55% female) recruited 384 youths with provider-diagnosed type 1 DM, 90 youths with type 2 DM, and 173 healthy control subjects between 2003 and 2006, in 2 US centers. PA and EM use were assessed with a 3-day recall of activities, in 30-minute time blocks. Adherence to current recommendations was determined as a report of ≥2 blocks of moderate/vigorous PA per day and <4 blocks of EM use per day. Differences in PA and EM use for DM/control groups were assessed with adjustment for age, study site, and race/ethnicity.


Male subjects with type 2 DM reported lower levels of vigorous PA than did control subjects (1.1 vs 2.3 blocks; P < .05). Compliance with the moderate/vigorous PA recommendation among youths with type 2 DM was lower (68.3%), compared with youths with type 1 DM (81.7%; odds ratio: 0.51 [95% confidence interval: 0.26–1.00]; P = .047) and control subjects (80.4%; odds ratio: 0.48 [95% confidence interval: 0.23–1.02]; P = .05). Rates of compliance with EM use recommendations ranged from 29.5% to 49.1%.


In this study, large proportions of youths with DM, especially type 2 DM, failed to meet PA and EM use recommendations.

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