Move your body every day to guard against type 2 diabetes.
That's the upshot of a new study that analyzed Fitbit data and type 2 diabetes rates from participants in a nationwide research program, reporting that women who logged more steps each day had a lower risk of diabetes.
"We investigated the relationship between physical activity and type 2 diabetes with an innovative approach using data from wearable devices linked to electronic health records in a real-world population,” said lead author Dr. Andrew Perry, of the Vanderbilt Translational and Clinical Cardiovascular Research Center in Nashville, Tenn. “We found that people who spent more time in any type of physical activity had a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Our data shows the importance of moving your body every day to lower your risk of diabetes."
The data came from more than 5,600 people, 75% of them women, who were part of the National Institutes of Health's All of Us research program between 2010 and 2021.
All of Us aims to advance individualized health care by enrolling and collecting data on more than 1 million people over many years.
Over four years, researchers found 97 new cases of diabetes among the 5,600 people in this new study.
People with an average daily step count of 10,700 — a little over 5 miles — were 44% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those with 6,000 steps, the study found.
The findings were recently published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
About 90% to 95% of people with diabetes have type 2, in which the body can't use insulin properly. It does not carry sugar into the cells.
Although type 2 diabetes is most common in people age 45 and up, more children, teens and young adults are being diagnosed with the disease.
“We hope to study more diverse populations in future studies to confirm the generalizability of these findings,” Perry said in a journal news release.
The American Diabetes Association has more information on type 2 diabetes.
SOURCE: Endocrine Society, news release, Dec. 13, 2022