Diabetes Prevention

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Diet and exercise remain the most important ways to prevent diabetes, and in most cases are more effective than drugs. Dr. Edward Hill discusses a study on diabetes prevention in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Lifestyle changes resulting in long-term weight loss are about twice as effective as drug treatment for preventing type 2 diabetes.

Researchers followed 3,000 high-risk patients for a decade in one of the largest and longest studies aimed at preventing diabetes ever conducted in the United States.

Roughly a third of the participants were initially asked to eat a low-fat diet and engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate activity a minimum of five times a week.

Another third were put on the diabetes drug metformin. The remaining patients initially received no intervention.

Three years into the trial, researchers reported that diabetes incidence was reduced by 58 percent in the lifestyle intervention group and 31 percent in the metformin group, compared to people who received no intervention.

The benefits of intensive lifestyle intervention were particularly strong in the elderly. Those aged 60 and older in the diet and exercise group lowered their rate of developing diabetes by half over 10 years.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.