Smoking Linked to Diabetes Risk

Heavy puffers saw 61% risk increase
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 12, 2007 1:13 PM CST
A woman holds a cigarette in this file photo.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The list of ways smoking can kill you got a bit longer today, reports the BBC. Smokers have a 44% higher chance of developing type 2 diabetes, a new study shows, and that risk rises yet higher for heavy smokers, up to 61%. “The relevant question should no longer be whether this association exists,” the researchers said, “but whether [it] is causal.”

The report, which analyzed 25 studies involving 1.2 million patients, doesn’t prove that smoking causes diabetes, but researchers say the higher risk for dedicated puffers is significant. Lighter smokers saw only a 29% risk increase. But because smokers don’t tend to live the world’s healthiest lifestyles, it’s difficult to isolate smoking as the chief cause of the problem.