Kids under the age of 15 are at a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes in winters, finds a new study.
Researchers from National Institute for Health and Welfare have found that this winter trend was more prevalent in boys as well as in both sexes from the older age groups 5 to 14 years old.
Unlike Type 2 diabetes, which develops in middle age, the Type 1 form typically arises in childhood and requires lifelong supplements of insulin.
The condition develops when the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas have been destroyed.
It is not known for sure why these cells have been damaged but the most likely cause is an abnormal reaction of the body to the cells. This may be triggered by a viral or other infection.
"Numerous reasons have been suggested for the apparent seasonality of the onset of Type 1 diabetes," Times Online quoted Elena Moltchanova, who led the study, as saying.
"These include a seasonal variation in people's levels of blood glucose and insulin, seasonal viral infections, the fact that young people tend to eat more and do less physical activity during winter months and, similarly, that summer holidays provide a rest from school stress and more opportunity to play outdoors," Moltchanova added.
Contrary to the previous study results, Victoria King, research manager at the charity Diabetes UK said, "this larger study shows a stronger correlation which is interesting, especially as we still don't know exactly why Type 1 diabetes develops.
"Investigating why we might be seeing this pattern could tell us more about what may be triggering the development of Type 1 diabetes."