There is evidence of a link between depression and diabetes. Specifically, there is a strong association between depression and the incidence of type 2 diabetes (i.e., which means that the appearance of type 2 diabetes is often found among individuals with depression), but a weak relation between diabetes and the risk of depression (i.e., not all individuals with diabetes have depression).

Similarly, there is an indication that anxiety might also contribute to the onset of type 2 diabetes, suggesting the implication of mood disorders in diabetes. The current study seeks to expand on prior findings regarding the association between anxiety/depression and type 2 diabetes by comparing individuals’ blood glucose status with levels of anxiety and/or depression in a population-based sample (i.e., non-clinical population, people without a diagnosed mental disorder).

Contrary to previous findings, the authors did not find a relation between anxiety and glucose metabolism status; however there was an association between depressive symptoms and glucose metabolism, which was determined by the prevalence of depressive symptoms among participants with type 2 diabetes.

Therefore, there is no evidence that anxiety could lead to type 2 diabetes. The mechanisms underlying the association between depression and type 2 diabetes on the other hand are not fully understood, but it has been suggested that depressive symptoms might have a negative influence on behavioral factors such as lack of exercise, having a sedentary lifestyle, and overeating that may result in the metabolic disturbance of glucose.

Bouwman V, Adriaanse MC, van ’t Riet E, Snoek FJ, Dekker JM, Nijpels G (2010) Depression, Anxiety and Glucose Metabolism in the General Dutch Population: The New Hoorn Study. PLoS ONE 5(4): e9971.

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