Type 2 diabetes, a condition widely thought of as a disease of the overweight and sedentary, also develops in people who aren’t overweight. And it may be deadlier in these normal-weight people, a new study shows.
In the study, which appeared in The Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers reviewed data involving more than 2,500 people with Type 2 diabetes, some of whom were followed for decades. The scientists found that those who were of normal weight around the time of their diagnoses were twice as likely to die during the study period, compared with those who were overweight or obese.
The findings also provide evidence that patients with Type 2 diabetes may display what researchers call the obesity paradox, the observation that people with certain chronic diseases tend to have lower mortality rates if they carry excess pounds. The phenomenon has been documented previously in people with heart failure, hypertension and kidney disease.