Low Birth Weight Linked to Development of Type 2 Diabetes in Old Age
Analysis of data from the Nurses' Health Study found that low birth weight was strongly linked to increased risk for type 2 diabetes in older age (Article, p. 278). Findings do not indicate that low birth weight causes type 2 diabetes, authors say, but low birth weight may be related to other prenatal risk factors, such as nutrition, hormones and growth. Until the relationship is understood, "it is premature to recommend changing current guidelines for maternal diet and weight gain during pregnancy." An editorial says this large study is further evidence that processes during fetal growthperhaps adaptation to malnutritionaffect adult disease (Editorial, p. 322). Therefore, to eventually reverse the "worldwide epidemic" of type 2 diabetes, the editorial calls for immediate research into how "undernutrition and retarded growth in utero lead to lifelong changes in glucose-insulin metabolism."
People who ate corn and potato chips made with olestra, a fat substitute, did not experience more unpleasant gastrointestinal effects than those who ate regular chips, a new study found. (Article, p. 253.) An admittedly overweight editorial writer ruminates on the placebo effect in the study's results (Editorial, p. 320).
U.S. Fungal Disease Can Travel; Visitors Take Note (Update,
Survey Explores Professional and Family Lives of Dual-Doctor Marriages (Medicine and Public Issues, p. 312.)