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Blood pressure drugs could prevent type 2 diabetes, study finds

Blood pressure drugs could prevent millions of people worldwide from developing type 2 diabetes, a large study suggests.

Lowering high blood pressure is an effective way to slash the risk of the disease in the future, according to the research published in the Lancet.

Doctors already prescribe cheap blood pressure drugs to reduce the chances of a life-threatening heart attack or stroke. However, until now, the question of whether these drugs could also help fend off the threat of type 2 diabetes had been unanswered.

Now researchers have found the protective effects of the drugs are much wider than previously thought. The study shows they may directly reduce someone’s risk of type 2 diabetes, a condition that an estimated 13.6 million people in the UK are at high risk of developing.

Currently, health experts say being a healthy weight and adopting a healthy lifestyle is the best way to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. Researchers say existing drugs – particularly ACE inhibitors and ARBs – should now be considered for some patients who are at higher risk of the disease.

Prof Kazem Rahimi, lead researcher of the study at the University of Oxford and a consultant cardiologist, said: “Our research provides clear evidence that giving ACE inhibitors or ARBs, which are widely available and affordable worldwide, to patients at high risk could curb the growing burden of type 2 diabetes.”

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Source: The Guardian, 11 November 2021


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