Diabetes and Depression

Type II Diabetes and Depression; two growing health problems in the United States. Diabetes is a physical illness that is characterized by the bodies inability to use glucose and results in high blood glucose levels (blood sugar levels). Depression on the other hand is a mental health challenge. Depression is more than just a bout of the blues, it is characterized by prolonged feelings of sadness, irritability, loss of interest or pleasure in normal activities, and or insomnia or excessive sleeping among other symptoms.

A new study performed by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health has provided evidence for a bidirectional correlation between the two diseases. Their research shows “women who suffer with depression were 17% more likely to develop type 2 diabetes… [and] women with diabetes were 29% more likely to develop depression than women without diabetes, even after adjusting for other mood disorders and risk factors. The likelihood of developing either disease was increased be the severity of the diabetes or depression that they already had.

The lead researcher Dr. Frank Hu believed that the likely common contributor to either disease is stress. Stress caused by depression lead to diabetes, and stress caused by diabetes lead to depression.

For the actual publication of the study click here.

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17 Responses to Diabetes and Depression

  1. cnewman0524 says:

    That is so interesting that women with depression are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and vice versa. The only I had was maybe when some women are depressed they can overeat and if that goes on for long enough then maybe it develops? I am not sure, but wow. This really made me think.

  2. trmptmvn says:

    I find the bidirectional finding to be very interesting. I wish that people realized the importance of reducing stress in their lives – it’s really hard, but so important, since we see here that it contributes to both diabetes and depression, and both of those contribute to having the other one. How frustrating!

  3. This is interesting. I wonder if it is because women who are depressed are less likely to eat well or to exercise. If that is the case, it would make sense.

  4. juminchae1 says:

    I didn’t know that the common contributor is because of stress. My problem is that I can’t manage my stress and I get sick all the time if I get too much stress. I will definitely work on controlling my stress and prevent diseases. I know that diabetes and depression do not directly come from stress but I think I still need to work on stress management since stress is not good anyway.

  5. melindawhite says:

    Why do you think that stress plays such a big role in diabetes and depression?

  6. Interesting correlation. Diabetes runs in my family but depression does not. I hope the two do not go hand in hand too often!

  7. I knew stress was bad, but i had no idea it would cause diabetes and depression. Scary.

  8. kyliedurham says:

    Wow, this is very interesting. My dad was diagnosed with type II diabetes and has also battled depression before. I really wonder if this correlation really is true.

  9. I can see why having diabetes would cause depression it is a hard disease to have. But 17% of depressed women doesn’t seem like a huge Number when you consider what other illness they may also have that accompany depression.

  10. linaqutob says:

    my friend was deeply depressed for a while, and she got diabetes now! i think people should take life easily as depression and stress could cause so many diseases

  11. cmmz88 says:

    I agree that depression and diabetes goes hand in hand. My dad was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and previous to that he was suffering from depression. I think that the imbalance of sugar plays a large role in that.

  12. This is so interesting. I have never really considered a link between the two. Do they have any ideas of why this is so?

  13. ashleygarner says:

    hmmm… what’s the link? i wonder how much obesity has to play into things. of course, it is a huge indicator of type II diabetes, but i wonder how much it might influence depression…

  14. rblicious says:

    Depression is caused by many different sources as well. It can be a traumatic experience, but also it’s generally due to a chemical imbalance in the brain. I dislike the fact that it is so stigmatized and less thought of as an actual disease like it is.

  15. rosec2 says:

    Type 2 diabetes is definately on the rise and most people living with this condition can be stressed out everyday especially when thier conditions aren’t getting better.

  16. This is interesting. I have never heard of these being related before. My mother has depression, but does not have diabetes, but diabetes does run in her family.

  17. cmilner2 says:

    I am doing a project on diabetes in another public health class right now, and it is so true that depression contributes to diabetes. This was a great post.

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