Higher prevalence of diabetes in people exposed to air pollutants..

November 7, 2010 - A study carried out at the Harvard Medical School’s Joslin Diabetes Center has found that people living in areas where air quality levels were near, but still below, the acceptable safety limits of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had a more than 20% higher diabetes prevalence than people exposed to fewer air pollutants.

The link persisted even after researchers factored in the impact of known diabetes risk factors such as obesity, race, and sedentary lifestyle.

PAPER: Association Between Fine Particulate Matter and Diabetes Prevalence in the U.S., John F. Pearson, Chethan Bachireddy, Sangameswaran Shyamprasad, Allison B. Goldfine, and John S. Brownstein (john_brownstein@harvard.edu), Diabetes Care October 2010 33:2196-2201,ABSTRACT.., FULL TEXT..

The study does not prove air pollution exposure contributes to diabetes risk, but it is the first large-scale, national study to explore a possible link.

“We know exposure to air pollution is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease,” says John Brownstein, PhD. “This is just one more piece of evidence that pollution impacts health.”

Reference: Air Pollution Linked to Risk of Diabetes, SamoaObserver.ws, 10/2/2010.