Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Are Diabetes and Depression Linked?

We all know that how you feel physically affects how you feel mentally - and vice-versa.

Do you have diabetes?  Are you depressed?  Ongoing research suggests that people with either health condition are at higher risk of developing the other.
Numerous studies have explored the link between diabetes and depression but scientists are still unsure if diabetes causes depression or depression causes diabetes. The latest research suggests the influence may go both ways, although depression seems less likely to lead to diabetes.

Because caring for diabetes can be stressful and overwhelming, it may lead to anxiety and depression.  On the other hand, if you are depressed, you may not be taking care of yourself – not eating healthily and not exercising - which, ultimately, can lead to diabetes.
According to Sara Foster, RN, MPH, “A recent review of 16 studies with nearly 500,000 participants found that people with type 2 diabetes were more likely to have depression than those without the disease. Past research reported a 24 percent higher risk for depression in people with type 2 diabetes. Those younger than 45 may be at particular risk for depression or type 2 diabetes if they already have the other condition.”

Proper treatment for both can make a difference. A recent study in the Annals of Family Medicine found that, “by treating diabetes and depression at the same time patients fared better. In fact, study participants who were given such integrated care had better blood sugar control and fewer symptoms of depression.”
If you think that you may be depressed, try exercise.

Scientists have found that regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects.
To learn how Fitness for Health can help you improve your mind-body connection utilizing state-of-the-art fitness technology, visit www.FitnessForHealth.org or call 301-231-7138.


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