Lower body mass index (BMI) is consistently associated with reduced type II diabetes risk, among people with varied family history, genetic risk factors and weight, according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Manuel Rivas of Stanford University, and colleagues.
Weight-loss interventions have shown demonstratable benefit for reducing the risk of type II diabetes in high-risk and pre-diabetic individuals but have not been well-studied in people at lower risk of diabetes. In the new study, researchers studied the association between BMI, diabetes, family history and genetic risk factors affecting type II diabetes or BMI.
Nearly 5% of the participants had a diagnosis of type II diabetes, and diabetes prevalence was confirmed to be associated with higher BMI, a family history of type II disease and genetic risk factors. Moreover, a 1 kg/m2 BMI reduction was associated with a 1.37 fold reduction in type II diabetes among non-overweight individuals with a BMI of less than 25 and no family history of diabetes, similar to the effect of BMI reduction in obese individuals with a family history.
“These findings suggest that all individuals can substantially reduce their type II diabetes risk through weight loss,” the authors say.