Low Muscle Mass Ups Diabetes Risk

LOS ANGELES, May 31 (UPI) — Dieting alone may not be enough to prevent type 2 diabetes, a U.S. researcher cautions.

Preethi Srikanthan of the University of California, Los Angeles, says sarcopenia — low skeletal muscle mass and strength often found in those who are older or obese — may put individuals at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Srikanthan and colleagues Andrea Hevener and Arun Karlamangla looked at data on 14,528 people from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III.

The researchers found sarcopenia associated with insulin resistance — the root cause of diabetes — in both obese and non-obese individuals. Sarcopenia was also associated with high blood-sugar levels in obese people, but not in thin people.

These associations were stronger in people age 60 and under, in whom sarcopenia was associated with high levels of blood sugar in both obese and thin people, and with diabetes in obese individuals.

The researchers conclude dieting may just not be enough — it is also vital to have good muscle mass and strength.

The findings are published in the journal Plos One.

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