Increasing body mass index (BMI) is the largest driver of diabetes in the United States, according to the results of a recent study published in the September 2, 2014, issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
The study analyzed risk factors associated with diabetes, including race and ethnicity, age, and BMI, to determine if they were contributing to the increase in prevalence of diabetes. The authors of the study evaluated 5 National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, looking at data collected between 1976 and 2010.
Between the surveys conducted from 1976 to 1980 and 2007 to 2010, the prevalence of diabetes increased from 4.7% to 11.2% in men and from 5.7% to 8.7% in women. After adjusting for age, race and ethnicity, and BMI, the prevalence of diabetes increased from 6.2% to 9.6% among men, but did not change among women. The results indicated that BMI was the greatest contributor among the 3 factors to the rise in diabetes.
“Overweight and obesity explained most of the increase in the prevalence of diabetes in the US during this time period,” said study researcher Andy Menke in a press release.