NEW YORK It has become conventional wisdom that the best way smokers can protect their health is to quit altogether, but a new study indicated that quitting may increase the risk of developing diabetes in the near term for some people.
Researchers from Johns Hopkins University, with funding from the National Institutes of Health, published the study in the Jan. 5 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine, showing that patients who quit increased their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 70% during the first six years after quitting compared with nonsmokers.
The risk was highest for those who had gained the most weight after quitting, with quitters putting on an average of 8.4 lbs. after three years. The researchers wrote that smokers at risk for diabetes who were considering quitting should pursue strategies for early detection and prevention of diabetes.
The study was based on data from 10,892 adults who had initially not developed diabetes between 1987 and 1989.