Academic journal article Health Care Financing Review

Diet and Exercise Dramatically Delay Type 2 Diabetes. (Recent Health Care Developments)

Academic journal article Health Care Financing Review

Diet and Exercise Dramatically Delay Type 2 Diabetes. (Recent Health Care Developments)

Article excerpt

At least 10 million Americans at high risk for type 2 diabetes can sharply lower their chances of getting the disease with diet and exercise, according to the findings of a major clinical trial.

The same study found that treatment with the oral diabetes drug metformin also reduces diabetes risk, though less dramatically, in people at high risk for type 2 diabetes.

Participants randomly assigned to intensive lifestyle intervention reduced their risk of getting type 2 diabetes by 58 percent. On average, this group maintained their physical activity at 30 minutes per day, usually with walking or other moderate intensity exercise, and lost 5-7 percent of their body weight. Participants randomized to treatment with metformin reduced their risk of getting type 2 diabetes by 31 percent.

The findings came from the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a major clinical trial comparing diet and exercise to treatment with metformin in 3,234 people with impaired glucose tolerance, a condition that often precedes diabetes. On the advice of the DPP's external data monitoring board, the trial ended a year early because the data had clearly answered the main research questions.

Smaller studies in China and Finland have shown that diet and exercise can delay type 2 diabetes in at-risk people, but the DPP, conducted at 27 centers nationwide, is the first major trial to show that diet and exercise can effectively delay diabetes in a diverse American population of overweight people with impaired glucose tolerance. …

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