Healthy Living May Prevent Prediabetes
Individuals may fare better with lifestyle changes, compared withdrug treatment, in warding off metabolic syndrome. The syndrome isa group of disorders that include obesity, high cholesterol, hypertension,and elevated blood sugar levels. The combination can lead todiabetes and heart disease.
For the study, 3234 participants were enrolled in the Diabetes PreventionProgram. They were randomly assigned to take metformin oran inactive placebo pill or to start a rigorous lifestyle intervention—designed to reach and maintain a 7% weight loss and including 150minutes of exercise per week. The participants had not yet developedoutright diabetes but had high blood glucose levels.
Reporting in the Annals of Internal Medicine (April 19, 2005), theresearchers diagnosed metabolic syndrome in 53% of the participantsoverall while they were in the program. After 3 years, the ratefell from 53% to 43% in the lifestyle group. Yet, the placebo groupand metformin group saw an increase—55% to 61% and 54% to55%, respectively.