Smoking Linked to Type 2 Diabetes
Smokers May Be More Likely Than Nonsmokers to Develop Type 2 Diabetes
Dec. 11, 2007 -- Smokers may be more likely than nonsmokers to develop type 2 diabetes, according to a
new research review.
The review included 25 studies of smoking and diabetes among a million people
ages 16 and older in the U.S., U.K., Europe, Japan, and Israel.
None of those people had type 2 diabetes when the studies started. But more
than 45,000 participants developed type 2 diabetes during the studies, which
lasted for five to 30 years.
The reviewers analyzed all the data and concluded that the chance of
developing type 2 diabetes was 44% higher for smokers than for nonsmokers.
Heavy smokers -- people who smoke at least 20 cigarettes per day -- were
more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than people who smoke fewer cigarettes
The pattern varied somewhat in its intensity but held for all but one of the
reviewed studies. Still, the studies don't prove that smoking causes type 2
The reviewers considered some diabetes risk factors, including the fact that
type 2 diabetes becomes more common with age.
But the review doesn't show whether exercise, social class, or education
affected the results.
The reviewers -- who included Carole WIlli, MD, of Switzerland's University
of Lausanne -- report their findings in tomorrow's edition of The Journal of
the American Medical Association.
The review may be a "conservative underestimate of the true association
between smoking and type 2 diabetes," states an editorial published with
Eric Ding, ScD, and Frank Hu, MD, PhD, wrote the editorial. They work at
Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Medical School, and Boston's Brigham
and Women's Hospital.