Diet and lifestyle advice for those with diabetes should be no different from
that given to the general public, researchers in Germany say.
Dr. Diewertje Sluik of the German Institute of Human Nutrition
Potsdam-Rehbruecke in Nuthetal, Germany, and colleagues used data from the
European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition, 6,384 with
diabetes and 258,911 without known diabetes.
Computer modeling was used to explore the relationship in both those with and
without diabetes of mortality with the following risk factors: body-mass index,
waist/height ratio, 26 food groups, alcohol consumption, leisure-time physical
activity and smoking.
The study, published in Diabetologia, found overall mortality was 62 percent
higher in people with diabetes compared with those without, but eating fruit,
vegetables, nuts, seeds, pasta, poultry and vegetable oil was related to a lower
mortality risk. However, the eating of butter and margarine was related to an
increased mortality risk.
While the strength of the association was different in those with diabetes
versus those without, the associations were in the same direction in each case.
No differences between people with and without diabetes were detected for the
other lifestyle factors including level of fat, alcohol consumption, physical
activity and smoking, Sluik said.
"It appears that the intake of some food groups is more beneficial -- fruits
legumes, nuts, seeds, pasta, poultry, vegetable oil -- or more detrimental food
such as soft drinks, butter, margarine, cake, cookies with respect to mortality
risk in people with diabetes.
This may indicate that individuals with diabetes might benefit more from a
healthy diet than people without diabetes. However, since the directions of
association were generally the same, recommendations for a healthy diet should
be similar for people with or without diabetes."