Depression May Increase Risk Of Developing Type 2 Diabetes

People dealing with depression and early signs of metabolic disease may be at a greater risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

According to a new study published in Molecular Psychiatry, the combination of depression and obesity, high blood pressure and poor cholesterol levels can increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

"Emerging evidence suggests that not depression, per se, but depression in combination with behavioral and metabolic risk factors increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular conditions," said Norbert Schmitz, lead author of the study. “The aim of our study was to evaluate characteristics of individuals with both depressive symptoms and metabolic risk factors."

Patterns of behavior

Researchers discovered that depression on its own does not pose a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes. For people living with both depression and metabolic symptoms, however, each factor impacts the other.

The authors of the study claim that people suffering from depression are less inclined to listen to medical advice from their doctors like getting exercise, quitting smoking and eating healthier. By not effectively managing their lives, metabolic symptoms can get worse - thereby increasing the symptoms of depression.

Researchers believe the key is to identify patients with both depression and metabolic symptoms to implement treatment options that help break negative patterns of behavior.

"Focussing on depression alone might not change lifestyle/metabolic factors, so people are still at an increased risk of developing poor health outcomes, which in turn increases the risk of developing recurrent depression," said Schmitz.

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