Antidepressants

A new study published in the journal Diabetologia points to a link between certain prescription antidepressants and an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

With the increasing rise in prescription antidepressant use, many side effects are becoming more common, including digestive disorders, nervous disorders, headaches and weight gain, which is creating a predisposition for developing diabetes.

The study, conducted by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health, looked at information gathered by an extensive Health Professionals Follow-Up Study and several of the Nurses Heath Studies. Data was collected in total from more than 200,000 individuals and more than 1.5 million person-years of data.

The research team looked at participants every two years, tracking the course of antidepressant use and found that individuals taking antidepressant medication had a 68 percent greater risk of developing the disease. A 30 percent increase was seen in individuals who were adjusted for other diabetes and health risks, and individuals whose BMI (body mass index) was a factor saw an increase of 17 percent from the antidepressants. Serotonins reuptake inhibitors showed a 10 percent increased risk and other antidepressants increased the risk of diabetes by 26 percent.

A growing epidemic, type 2 diabetes affects nearly 30 million Americans, many of whom are overweight or obese. There is no cure for type 2 diabetes, and it comes with an increased risk for developing other serious illnesses. Most cases of type 2 diabetes are related to diet and lifestyle—commensurate with poor food choices and lack of regular exercise.

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Image: brains the head