Is type 2 diabetes genetic? Diabetes is caused by several factors. It is common knowledge that nutrition and exercise play a role in diabetes, but it is a lesser-known fact that genetics also contribute to the development of diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, you will likely suffer from type 2 diabetes if one or both of your parents have diabetes. So the question is, what is the connection between genetics and diabetes? Can genetics predict if you will get diabetes or not in your lifetime? And how does this genetic connection work?