Common bodily exercise reduces threat for sort 2 diabetes, impartial of air pollution

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March 05, 2021

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According to a study published in Diabetologia, adults who routinely engage in high levels of physical activity may be able to reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes, even in areas with high levels of air pollution.

“Regular physical activity is a safer approach for people living in polluted areas to prevent diabetes.” Xiang Qian Lao, BMed, PhD, Associate professor in the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care at the University of Hong Kong in China, said Healio. “Air pollution increases the risk of diabetes, but it does not override the benefits of regular physical activity in preventing diabetes. Reducing air pollution is important for preventing diabetes. “

Lao is a Associate Professor at the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Laos and colleagues collected data from an ongoing large prospective cohort study in Taiwan. In the study, adults aged 18 or over visited the MJ Health Management Institution in Taiwan for a range of baseline medical exams and regular follow-up exams. For the study, adults without type 2 diabetes were selected at the start of the study, for whom plasma glucose measurements and particulate matter values ​​were available between 2001 and 2016. The participants reported details of their weekly physical activity in a questionnaire, the intensity being rated as light, medium, medium or high. The weekly time spent practicing physical activity was also recorded. Two years of mean particulate matter concentrations were estimated for each participant’s address based on latitude and longitude data. Pollution was measured using aerosol optical depth data from the medium resolution imaging spectroradiometer installed on US NASA satellites.

Of the 156,314 study participants, 5,305 developed type 2 diabetes during a mean follow-up period of 5.2 years. In a fitted model, the researchers observed an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes in participants with moderate physical activity (adjusted HR = 1.31; 95% CI, 1.22-1.41; P <0.001) and low physical activity (aHR = 1.56); 95% CI, 1.45-1.68; P <0.001) compared to those who showed high levels of physical activity. Participants who had moderate pollution (aHR = 1.31; 95% CI, 1.22-1.4; P <0.001) or high pollution (aHR = 1.94; 95% CI, 1.76-2, 14; P <0.001) were also at a higher risk of type 2 diabetes compared to people exposed to low levels of pollution.

The researchers found that while the study’s measurements of physical activity and pollution were not comparable, the data suggested that pollution was slightly stronger linked to diabetes.

“I’m surprised to find that air pollution is more closely related to diabetes than … normal physical activity,” said Lao. “That means that reducing air pollution is more efficient for preventing diabetes.”

In the subgroup analysis, participants who exercised a high degree of habitual physical activity had a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than participants who participated in moderate or low values ​​regardless of the degree of pollution. Similarly, regardless of how much physical activity was done, moderate and high levels of pollution increased the risk of type 2 diabetes compared to low pollution. The risk of developing type 2 diabetes in a person with high levels of habitual physical activity who was exposed to low levels of pollution was 64% lower than that of a low-activity participant who was exposed to high levels of pollution.

Lao said future research should examine the effects of physical activity in polluted areas on other health outcomes, including high blood pressure, lung disease, dyslipidemia, chronic kidney disease and mortality. He also said research should be done in other regions, including those with higher levels of pollution.

For more informations:

Xiang Qian Lao, BMed, PhD, can be reached at xqlao@cuhk.edu.hk.

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