May 13, 1999
Overweight men as young as 20-something may be at high risk for developing diabetes when they reach middle age, according to results of a Johns Hopkins study published in this week's issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
The study found that men who were overweight at age 25 -- as well as those who were overweight at 35 and at 45 -- were more than three times as likely to develop diabetes as their thinner counterparts. Those who remained heavy throughout that time period were at highest risk. Being overweight from ages 45 to 49 also was a risk factor.
Frederick L. Brancati, M.D., M.H.S., associate professor of medicine and epidemiology at Hopkins, and colleagues analyzed data on 916 men from the Johns Hopkins Precursors Study, a long-term investigation of former Hopkins medical students who graduated between 1948 and 1964. Of the 916, 35 developed type 2 diabetes. The findings suggest that weight control in early adulthood may be an effective means to prevent type 2 diabetes.
The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the American Diabetes Association.
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