Diabetes Medication and the FDA

Harry Health Guide
  • In light of recent reports that Avandia, a common diabetic medication, is going to be re-labeled with what is called a black box warning from the FDA, regarding heart disease, and that Actose, a similar medicine, is probably going to carry a similar warning, people with diabetes are wondering what to do about medications.


    It is very important to realize that any differences in the long-term health benefits of the different diabetes medications are largely theoretical, and that very few well done, long-term clinical trials have compared the different categories of medication. It is likely that most of the benefit comes from control of the blood sugar, regardless of which medications you use, and it is certainly true that life style, in the case of diabetes especially exercise, remains a more powerful intervention than most of the medications, although they certainly work synergistically, and a combination is absolutely the best.

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    Don't panic if you are on a medication that gets flagged by the FDA, but do check with your doctor. Regardless, remember that the medicines are only an adjunct to lifestyle, and they can never compensate for lack of exercise or poor nutrition, they can only fight a rear-guard action in a losing battle.

Published On: July 30, 2007