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Prediabetics Who Lose Weight May Decrease Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Prediabetes means you have a higher-than-normal blood sugar level. It's not high enough to be considered type 2 diabetes yet, but without lifestyle changes, adults with prediabetes are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. According to a new study, prediabetics who lose 6 to 7 pounds may decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 45%.

Participants in the study included 1,028 adults with prediabetes and a high-risk glycemic category who took part in the Norfolk Diabetes Prevention Study. They were assigned to one of three interventions: a lifestyle intervention that included a modified diet and increased physical activity, a lifestyle intervention that included a modified diet and increased physical activity and support from mentors, or a control group that received their usual care.  The interventions lasted for 2 years and body weight and incidences of diabetes were recorded.

The researchers found that participants who lost 6 to 7 pounds, and kept the weight off, saw a 40 to 47% decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Results in the two lifestyle intervention groups were similar, meaning adding support from mentors did not have a significant effect.

The study was conducted by researchers from Norwich University Hospital. It was published online ahead of print on November 2, 2020 in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

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