Staying slim cuts the risk dramatically, but thin people can certainly develop diabetes. The condition arises when the cells in the body become resistant to insulin, the hormone that escorts blood sugar (glucose) into cells. Doctors think insulin resistance is caused by the build-up of microscopic fat droplets inside cells - especially muscle cells and fat cells. This can occur even in someone who has little belly or hip fat.
Luckily, the same dietary steps that reduce belly fat and hip fat also help prevent the build-up of fat inside cells.