What is the recent research on type 2 diabetes?


There are currently multiple studies and new medications coming out for diabetes treatment. In this video, Michelle Lalick, RN, BSN, CDE, of Mercy Health, explains some of the treatments and advances in technology now available.

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Joane Goodroe
Nursing Specialist

Diet and exercise combined are important in the prevention of type 2 diabetes in women. Dr. Caitlin Mason at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle reported that a new study suggests that women may be able to prevent getting type 2 diabetes by dieting and exercising.

Exercise and dieting combined have the greatest result. Postmenopausal women were separated into four groups for one year. She stated, “We saw the greatest improvement in the diet and exercise group, followed by the diet alone group.” Aside from weight loss, exercise showed it has other benefits. “Exercise seemed to have these special effects. This might have to do with the fact that exercise stimulates muscle and muscle is a major user of blood sugar.”

The study was published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and was supported by the National Institutes of Health: http://www.hhs.gov/news/healthbeat/2011/09/20110913a.html.




According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) the statistics aren't good. "One in 10 U.S. adults has diabetes now. The prevalence is expected to rise sharply over the next 40 years due to an aging population more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, increases in minority groups that are at high risk for type 2 diabetes, and people with diabetes living longer. A report predicts that the number of new diabetes cases each year will increase from 8 per 1,000 people in 2008, to 15 per 1,000 in 2050."

These numbers could also swell to 438 million internationally by the year 2030. Wow!

Currently the CDC finds that people with diagnosed diabetes have medical costs that are more than twice that of those without the disease. The total costs of diabetes are an estimated $174 billion annually, including $116 billion in direct medical costs. That is a tremendous amount of money spent per year on a condition that can be prevented in most cases. Save money, get and stay healthy!

The good news? As everyone in the US probably knows deep down, adjusting out diet and exercising regularly to control body mass index and improve overall health and function can do wonders.

Higher carbohydrate diets coupled with little to no physical activity are a recipe for disaster. Eating less is not the answer. Consulting a credentialed professional to establish an individualized exercise and eating plan is a sure fire way to enhance health. If personal counseling on nutrition is not an option, then look to balanced meals that do included healthy fats, lean protein, vegetables and fruit. Go easy on; alcoholic drinks, sweet, fruit juices, jellies, soda, refined carbohydrates, fried and high-fat starches. You can eat plenty, feel full and be energetic.

As far as exercise goes, do it 5-7 days per week accumulating 60 minutes of activity per day. Buy a pedometer and take 10,000 steps a day. Learn to dance, play with the kids, join a gym, play a sport. Like Nike says "Just Do It!"

It's not about starving yourself and doing crunches till you burst, but it is about awareness and a commitment to a healthy lifestyle.

Dr. Sylvester Quevedo

That is a very broad question since there are hundreds of studies published in the field of diabetes research every year. However, as an example, let's take a look at recent ADA (American Diabetes Association) funded research in the specific areas of nutrition and diabetic heart and blood vessel disease:

  1. Mediterranean diet and incidence of and mortality from coronary heart disease and stroke in women, by Teresa T. Fund, et al., published in Circulation 119:1093‐1100, 2009.
    Study Summary: Women can reduce their risk of having a heart attack or stroke by following a "Mediterranean" diet that is rich in monounsaturated fat, plant-based protein, whole grains and fish, with only moderate amounts of alcohol, and low in red meat, refined grains and sweets.
  2. Diet soda intake and risk of incident metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes in the Multi‐Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, by Jennifer A. Nettleton, et al., published in Diabetes Care 32:726‐688‐694, 2009.
    Study Summary: People who drank diet soda at least once a day had a 36 percent greater chance of having a high waist measurement and high blood glucose levels. People who drank diet soda at least once a day also had a 67 percent higher chance of getting diabetes compared to those who did not drink diet sodas, and this was not related to body fat measurements.
  3. Body mass index and vigorous physical activity and the risk of heart failure among men, by Satish Kenchaiahm et al., Published in Circulation 119:44‐52, 2009.
    Study Summary: After taking other factors into account, every increase of 1 in BMI (Body Mass Index) raised the chance of having heart failure by 11 percent. Compared to lean participants, those who were overweight were 49 percent more likely and those who were obese were 180 percent more likely to suffer from heart failure. Getting vigorous exercise lowered the risk of heart failure by about 18 percent. Lean active men had the lowest and obese inactive men had the highest chances of having heart failure.

Continue Learning about Diabetes


Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.