Britain – A new study published by in the Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology has come to suggest that cigarette smoking is directly related to the risks of suffering type 2 diabetes.

Cigarette smoking is the leading preventable cause of disease, but many individuals are reluctant to quit because they are concerned about weight gain. For now the study confirms that the association between smokers and weigh-related problems might not be casual as previous researchers said.

The study also concluded that the discovery does not only applies to smokers, but secondhand smokers are at equal risk for type 2 diabetes.

Photo: Air Better

The test

For the study, Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard and  epidemiology professor An Pan, from the School of Public Health analyzed data from 88 prospective studies that reported the risk for type 2 diabetes by baseline smoking status, with 5,898,795 participants and 295,446 incident cases of type 2 diabetes.

“Cigarette smoking should be considered as a key modifiable risk factor for diabetes,” Frank Hu, MD, said in a press release to EurekAlert.

The results

Findings revealed that when compared with others in the study who had never smoked, current smoking increased this risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 37 percent. Furthermore, former smokers risk was up by 14 percent while passive smoking risk went up to 22 percent (otherwise known as breathing in secondhand smoke.

Researchers also discovered that there was a 54 percent increased risk of type 2 diabetes in those who quit smoking less than 5 years ago, which fell to an 18 percent increased risk after 5 years and 11 percent increased risk more than 10 years after quitting.

Also, it was revealed that participants who identified as current smokers and secondhand smokers were at greater risks than nonsmokers and former smokers. Pooling 10 studies with 1,086,608 participants it was also discovered that the risk for diabetes fell as participants quit for longer periods of time.

“Despite the global efforts to combat the tobacco epidemic, cigarette use remains the leading cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide […] this study underscores the importance of implementing and enforcing the provisions of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The smoke-free policies can provide protections for non-smokers and may lead to increased successful cessation in smokers” added An Pan in the publication.

Source: Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology