Investigating Low-Inflammatory Diets and Diabetes Risk: A Comprehensive Study Overview
Background: The Diabetes Epidemic and Lifestyle Factors
Diabetes affects over 7% of the global population, contributing to 6.7 million fatalities in 2021. While diabetes remains incurable, lifestyle changes and a healthy diet can significantly decrease the relative risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) by 40% to 70%.
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Evidence suggests that chronic conditions like T2D may have a link to low-grade systemic inflammation. Previous studies revealed associations between high-inflammatory diets and an elevated risk of T2D.
However, research exploring the impact of anti-inflammatory diets on the progression from prediabetes to diabetes remains limited.
Study Focus and Methodology
The study published in BMC Medicine delves into the associations between low-inflammatory diets and T2D risk. Researchers analyzed participants from the UK Biobank, collecting data on demographics, socioeconomic status, and education through questionnaires and interviews.
The study evaluated glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) levels during initial screenings.
The assessment utilized the Oxford WebQ questionnaire to gauge the 24-hour intake of food and beverages. Participants were categorized as prediabetic if their baseline HbA1c ranged from 5.7% to 6.4% and normoglycemic if below 5.7%.
To evaluate the impact of genetic risk on T2D, researchers computed a weighted genetic risk score (GRS) based on over 400 T2D-associated risk variants identified in previous European studies.
Key Findings and Implications
The study comprised 142,271 non-diabetic individuals, where 16,068 were prediabetic and 126,203 were normoglycemic.
Over a median follow-up of 8.4 years, 3,348 normoglycemic and 2,496 prediabetic individuals developed T2D.
Higher inflammatory diet index (IDI) scores correlated with increased T2D risk among normoglycemic individuals, while moderate or low IDI scores were linked to reduced risk.
Moderate IDI diets delayed T2D onset by 2.2 years compared to high IDI diets. Similarly, in the prediabetes group, higher IDI correlated with dose-dependent T2D risk.
Additionally, individuals with moderate or low-inflammatory diets index scores experienced delayed T2D onset by 0.71 to 1.11 years, respectively.
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There was also a higher T2D incidence among those with moderate or high genetic risk compared to low genetic risk individuals.
The study highlighted significant interactions between IDI and GRS on T2D risk, showcasing reduced T2D risk with low IDI among those with low genetic risk. Interestingly, hsCRP was found to mediate 7.1% of the association between IDI and T2D.
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Conclusion: Implications and Limitations
The research underscores that a low-inflammatory diets correlates with reduced T2D risk in a dose-dependent manner, delaying T2D onset among individuals with normoglycemia and prediabetes.
Importantly, adherence to low-inflammatory diets may mitigate genetic factors influencing T2D development.
However, the study’s focus on individuals of white British ancestry might restrict the broader applicability of the findings.
Nonetheless, these insights highlight the potential of low-inflammatory diets in T2D prevention, emphasizing the importance of dietary considerations in diabetes management.