Researchers have recently found evidence that suggests severe depression may be a factor in the development of type 2 diabetes.
The relationship between diabetes and depression has been the subject of a great deal of speculation and past research. Studies have shown that symptoms of depression are more common in people with diabetes than in control subjects.
This, however, was the first study to take age into account, because both depression and type 2 diabetes are related to age. The relationship between depression and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes was found to be especially strong in subjects 45 years of age and up.
While the study, reported in the October 1996 issue of Diabetes Care, was unable to determine definitively whether the depression caused the diabetes or vice-versa, the results suggest that severe forms of depression may actually cause type 2 diabetes. However, the study never excluded the possibility that the observed relationship between type 2 diabetes and depression might be the result of behaviors caused by the conditions rather than by the conditions themselves.