Moments of Decision
August 31, 2015
Time.com ran a story about a research project in Denmark which has uncovered a relationship between the onset of type-2 diabetes and prior heavy use of antibiotics. The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, looked at 170,000 type-2 diabetics, and matched their medical records against 1.3 million Danish citizens of similar description but without diabetes. Statistically, people who became diabetic had used 60% more antibiotics than non-diabetics.
The authors proposed two possible mechanisms for this result. First, they wondered if the tendency to be vulnerable to infection that may accompany diabetes actually starts earlier in the process than the diabetes can be detected, and therefore those people need more antibiotics even before they are diagnosed. The second interpretation is that antibiotics use itself raises the risk of type-2 diabetes.
A major player in antibiotics research leans toward the second explanation. Dr. Martin Blaser, professor of medicine and microbiology at New York University Medical Center, says that your personal bacterial profile, which is normal and required for good health, is distorted by antibiotics overuse, which creates an environment consistent with a downward spiral of health and function.
Dr. Blaser said, “Antibiotics have cost—not just monetary cost, but a biological cost in terms of potentially causing long-term effects. As we’re studying [the evidence] more and more, it suggests that things may bounce back, but it may not be the same normal, and it may predispose to other diseases—including important diseases, common diseases, like type-2 diabetes.”
Read the whole story here...