Overweight diabetics live longer compared to slimmer individuals: Study

After following 10,568 patients with type-2 diabetes for more than 11 years, a British research team concluded that overweight diabetes patients outlive the slimmer ones. The study found that overweight and obese diabetics had more instances of hospitalization for heart ailments. The team stressed that the lifespan was longer for overweight patients, not obese.

Generally, diabetes patients are advised to keep their weight under control and to monitor their blood sugar level. Type-2 diabetes also increased the risk of cardiovascular disease among overweight patients. Overweight patients were 13 percent less likely to die due to type-2 diabetes compared to normal weight and obese patients.

The study was led by Dr. Stephen Atkin and Dr. Pierluigi Costanzo of Britain's University of Hull. Costanzo said, “These results are exploratory and hypothesis-generating. Living a healthy lifestyle aiming to achieve weight loss should be always pursued as already indicated by guidelines.”

Earlier studies have shown conflicting results for type-2 diabetes patients. The research team said that more research on the topic will be required to explain the ‘obesity paradox’.

The research team found that overweight people had less chances of dying from diabetes compared to obese and underweight individuals. The rate of death from type-2 diabetes was the highest among underweight patients.

The study subjects were free from heart disease at the time they were enrolled for the study. The study team hasn’t factored in the intake of alcohol and smoking habits of the study subjects. Being overweight protects an individual against frailty and osteoporosis.

The study results have been published in May 4 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

United Kingdom