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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Type 2 Diabetes and Depression

In a recent article in Diabetes Self-Management Magazine, there was an article entitled, "Diabetes and Depression: Chicken and Egg. The thrust of the article was Chicken or Egg, which came first? It goes on to say that people with diabetes are twice as likely to suffer from depression, however there is no conclusive evidence of whether the diabetes itself causes the depression or the depression contributes to the diabetes.

Women are apparently more likely to experience depression than men. Over the course of a lifetime, the ratio is about 20% of women and 12% of men. They cite a study consisting of a group of 127,700 female registered nurses who were 30-55 years old when they signed up for the study in 1976. They all responded to a mailed questionnaire every two years since then. The study excluded all who at baseline had no information on depression status or who had a history of type 1, or gestational diabetes, cancer, heart disease or stroke. This left approximately 60,000 women in the original population to be analyzed.

The study further analyzed the most recent date for depression and Type 2 diabetes. Depression was defined as self-reported symptoms of depression, use of anti-depressants, or a physician diagnosis of depression. Further classification was for the severity of depression. There was also follow up on reported cases of diabetes, high blood glucose episodes, and use of insulin and oral diabetes medicines to confirm self-reported diagnosis. Lastly the study took into account the participants height, weight, body mass index, smoking history, marital status, physical activity levels, dietary status, and alcohol use.

An analysis compared the relative risks of developing Type 2 Diabetes in those with depression at baseline versus those without and compared the relative risks of developing depression in those with type 2 diabetes at baseline and those without.

Over the 10 years of follow-up data, 2844 of the women with depression also developed diabetes, and 595 women with diabetes at baseline developed depression.

Bottom line is that there is a reciprocal relationship between depression and diabetes, and one that depends on the severity or treatment of each condition. The relationship was independent of variations in diet, lifestyle, and sociodemographic characteristics (such as income, education, age, race, ethnicity, marital status and place of residence.

Bottom line was that diabetes was significantly associate with an increased risk for developing depression and women on insulin therapy had a higher risk than those on oral medicines. This study's population was homogeneous: 94% white and all registered nurses. The result is that the study cannot be generalized to all populations.

It is unsure what role anti-depressants played, or the possibly synergism between anti-depressants and insulin or oral meds etc.


It seems logical to me that the correlation between becoming depressed as a result of having Type 2 diabetes is greater than the reverse of depression in and of itself causing diabetes. 

For me personally, I think that the role of aerobic and weight resistance exercise can go a long ways in defeating any depression. It is an earth shaking event to most of us I think, to wake up one morning and be told you have Type 2 diabetes. For me personally, my thoughts were, "WHY ME?" I am not and have never been a couch potato. I don't eat a lot of junk food, and I am fairly active etc.

Exercise gets your blood pumping, your endorphins (feel good stuff kicking in). It also makes you goal orientated. You get your mind off feeling sorry for yourself. You get involved in study and research and the latest nutritional research being done. You find out the possible causes and cures for Type 2 diabetes and you start taking action. You get excited that perhaps you can beat this thing. You begin to eat right, take supplements, get off the empty calorie foods, the high refined carbohydrate foods, the carbonated colas, and you begin to replace those items with a vegetable regimen. You eat more greens, and salads, and a larger variety of vegetables, fruits etc. You realize that prescription drugs are NOT the long term answer to anything. You quit looking for the "MAGIC BULLET", THE miracle cure or pill that you can take once a day and eat anything and everything on the planet. You take responsibility for your own health and you thank the God of this universe for having mercy on you.

Doing something is better than doing nothing.

Psalm 107:20
He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.

Psalm 118:17
I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the LORD has done.

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