Antidepressants may increase risk for type 2 diabetes

diabetes illus250x03 Antidepressants may increase risk for type 2 diabetesPeople who use antidepressants may be at greater risk for developing type 2 diabetes, according to a new study published in Diabetologia.

Researchers at Harvard School of Public Health conducted a meta-analysis and determined that antidepressants are associated with a 68 percent increased risk for developing the disease, after adjustment for age. Previous studies have suggested a link; the meta-analysis is based on three cohorts of U.S. adults – Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS), Nurses’ Health Study I (NHS I), and Nurses’ Health Study II (NHSII).

A total of nearly 170,000 participants were involved.

At baseline, all participants did not have type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease or cancer. Patients were surveyed at baseline and every two years for their use of antidepressant medication. Researchers found 6,641 people who developed type 2 diabetes. Those who used antidepressants were at a 68 percent greater risk for type 2 diabetes. The risk increased another 30 percent among antidepressant users for those with diabetes risk factors and history of high cholesterol and high blood pressure.

The most widely prescribed antidepressants in the U.S. are in a class known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs. Brand-name SSRIs include Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, Lexparo and Prozac. SSRI side effects include weight gain, which may contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes.

SSRIs also have been linked to health problems when taken during pregnancy. Not only can the drugs cause serious birth defects, they also have been linked to high blood pressure in the mother, which can lead to preeclampsia, a condition that can be life threatening for both mother and her unborn child. Pregnant women are also at risk for gestational diabetes, and could possibly be at even greater risk for developing the condition if they take SSRIs.

Source: Food Consumer