Oct 11 2015

New Study shows Possible Increased Risk for Type 2 Diabetes

Published by at 12:16 pm under General

Scientists discover a possible link between Type 2 diabetes and antibiotic use.

Antibiotics, though life-saving when necessary, have a dramatic, negative effect on the microbiome, and therefore should only be used when absolutely necessary. The altered landscape of the microbiome after antibiotic use can take months to recover. “A single course of antibiotics can wipe out beneficial strains of bacteria for six months or more…”1 When an individual undergoes repeated antibiotic treatments, it can throw one’s gut out of whack for years and lead to numerous health issues including metabolic syndrome. (See the blog from August 9, 2015)*

There has been a dramatic increase in metabolic syndrome over the last few decades, and scientists are exploring why. The journal Nature examined how emulsifiers might be a contributing factor ‘…to the rising incidence of obesity, metabolic syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease by interfering with microbes in the gastrointestinal tract…” 1* (See blog from August 16th) What seems to be a common thread is that altered gut bacteria is a leading factor in the rise of these diseases. We are becoming aware of the spiraling effect that so many people are experiencing. Overuse of antibiotics leads to altered gut bacteria which can lead to a compromised immune system. A weakened immune system makes us more susceptible to illness, which leads to more antibiotics. We wonder why there is such a rise in metabolic syndrome, yet if we look at the patterns of diet, food supply and antibiotic use over the last half century in our country, it is not really that hard to understand.*

Researchers in Demark honed in on this and did a case-controlled study to explore whether antibiotic use had any affect on a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes. They took into consideration individual types of antibiotics, individual groups of antibiotics, and the number of antibiotics courses, to see what their different effects were. Their results supported “…the possibility that antibiotics exposure increases type 2 diabetes risk…” 2*

Researchers compared 170,504 cases of type 2 diabetes to 1,364,008 people without diabetes from a 13 year period. They cross referenced records from the public health care database, to determine who used antibiotics, what type and how often. What they found out was that those individuals who filled 2-4 prescriptions for antibiotics during this 13 year period had a 23% greater risk for diabetes, compared to those who filled no prescriptions. The risk for diabetes went up to 53% for those individuals who had filled five or more antibiotic prescriptions. The research suggests that the disruption in the gut microbiota, as a result of the antibiotics, may lead to insulin sensitivity, along with glucose intolerance…both factors that can lead to diabetes.(2,3)*

“…Antibiotics cause marked alterations in the human gut microbiota with stereotypic declines and expansions in the abundance of certain taxa and incomplete recovery to the initial composition in some individuals. In observational studies, exposure to antibiotics has been linked with development of obesity, and specific antibiotics have been associated with glucose homeostasis disturbances in patients with type 2 diabetes. Recently, an observational study from the United Kingdom reported an increased risk of diabetes following exposure to any of five commonly prescribed antibiotics, also showing a clear dose-response effect. At the same time, patients with type 2 diabetes had increased incidence of infections, raising the possibility of confounding by indication..”2*

The good news is that this conversation is occurring more often…in the news, and in the offices of health care practitioners across the country and around the globe. The public is becoming aware of the dangers of overusing antibiotics not just on the individual level of altered gut bacteria, but also on a larger scale with antibiotic resistance becoming a serious public health care concern. As scientists continue to unveil vital links of cause and effect such as this regarding type 2 diabetes and antibiotics, we are on a path to prevention. Because we know the vital importance of gut health at Body Biotics, we especially find this research important as we continue to explore the many ways that BODY BIOTICS™ BIO-IDENTICAL SBO PROBIOTICS CONSORTIA™ can help restore gut health after antibiotic use and keep the immune system at its healthiest. Diabetes is a serious health issue. Keep your gut healthy to help avoid possibly preventable health conditions down the road.

Healthiest wishes,




  1. http://press.endocrine.org/doi/pdf/10.1210/jc.2015-2696
  2. http://www.ion.ac.uk/information/onarchives/proanti
  3. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/09/09/antibiotic-use-tied-to-diabetes-risk/?ref=health&_r=1

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