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Too Many Antibiotics Could Raise Diabetes Risk

Too Many Antibiotics Could Raise Diabetes Risk
  • The more a person takes antibiotics, the greater their risk of developing type 2 diabetes, concludes a new study by researchers in Denmark.

    The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, used data on prescriptions for 170,504 people with type 2 diabetes. The data was also compared to 1.3 million people without the condition.

    Compared to 0.5 antibiotic prescriptions a year in those who did not have diabetes, researchers found that those who did have type 2 diabetes had a greater number of antibiotics, with 0.8 per year. They noted that the strongest risk factors were with what are known as narrow-spectrum antibiotics, such as penicillin, which are designed to target specific bacteria.

    Prior studies have linked antibiotics to altering tissue and organ function, including bacteria in the human gut, and reducing the body’s ability to break down sugar -- a symptom of type 2 diabetes. Researchers say that these effects may explain why they found a close association between antibiotic use and diabetes risk.

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    This Week's Slice of History: Taking on DDT: Aug. 29, 1962


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