Statin drugs or drugs that lower cholesterol may have a significant relation to person's risk in developing type 2 diabetes, according to a recent study in Finland.
According to a group of researchers, anti-cholesterol drugs may be linked to higher risks of developing type 2 diabetes, by at least 50 percent. This has been observed even after adjusting other factors.
Statins Increase Risk Of Having Type 2 Diabetes; Prevents Secretion Of Insulin
The study confirms how statins increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes in patients suffering from high lipid levels. The researchers explained that statins have the capacity to increase the body's resistance to insulin. Another reason is that these statins seem to prevent the pancreas from secreting insulin.
Dr. Ronald Goldberg confirmed that the findings "show evidence that statins increased insulin resistance, and that the people who developed diabetes appeared to have less ability to respond to the insulin resistance by making more insulin." Dr. Goldberg is the director of the Lipid Disorder Clinic and associate director of the Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami.
The researchers further noted in their research that the results only confirmed association between the use of cholesterol-lowering drugs and diabetes. The study was only however limited to white male individuals, therefore, it is unclear whether the findings is also applicable to females and other racial groups.
What Is Diabetes?
American Diabetes Association (ADA) confirms that 29 million people in the United States are suffering from diabetes. Specifically, a person suffers from type 2 diabetes when the body becomes unable to react to insulin. Insulin is a hormone essential in the processing of sugars contained in food. As a homeostatic reaction to this imbalance, the body produces higher levels of insulin. According to ADA, the common cause is usually obesity and inactive lifestyle.
The authors confirmed that earlier studies have proven statins increase a person's risk of developing diabetes. These studies however were mainly focused on the role of statins in preventing cardiovascular disease, not on their potential risk in causing diabetes.
Study Design Targeted On 9,000 Diabetic Male Patients
The latest study in University of Eastern Finland monitored the effects of statins in 9,000 males without diabetes for six years. The participants were aged between 45 and 73 years old. One out of the four men started taking the statins at the onset of the study.