Dr. Bray Links

Monday, February 13, 2017

Air Pollution 'a Catalyst' for Obesity, Diabetes in Children

Among obese, disadvantaged Latino children, greater exposure to air pollution was associated with an adverse effect on glucose homeostasis markers that reflect risk of type 2 diabetes, in a new study.

Specifically, in this study of children who were 8 to 15 at entry and followed for a mean of 3.5 years, exposure to higher levels of air pollution was linked with lower insulin sensitivity, a decline in beta-cell function, and a higher body mass index (BMI) at age 18 — independent of initial excess weight.

The study by Tanya L Alderete, PhD, University of Southern California (USC), Los Angeles, and colleagues was published online January 30 in Diabetes.

"It has been the conventional wisdom that [the current] increase in diabetes is the result of an uptick in obesity due to sedentary lifespans and calorie-dense diets," senior author Frank Gilliland, MD, from the Keck School of Medicine, USC, said in a statement. However, "our study shows air pollution also contributes to type 2 diabetes risk."

"Importantly," the adverse effects of air pollution on insulin homeostasis, insulin sensitivity, and beta-cell function were independent of adiposity, Dr Alderete and colleagues stress.


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