Drinking More Water May Reduce Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
High blood sugar in the body, known as hyperglycemia, can be very dangerous, especially for diabetes sufferers, but according to a recent French research study, simply drinking at least four 8 ounce glasses of water every day may help prevent the development of hyperglycemia.
A total of 3,615 women and men participated in the study, and each had presented with normal blood sugar levels at the start of the study. Results showed that study participants who reported drinking more than 34 ounces of water daily were 21% less likely to develop hyperglycemia during the nine-year span of the study than those who reported drinking 16 ounces or less per day.
During the study, other factors that can affect hyperglycemia risk were taken into account such as weight, age, sex, physical activity and diet, such as consuming sugary beverages including beer and wine and certain foods. While the results of the study are not conclusive-there is a chance that those in the study who drank more water also shared some unmeasured similarities that resulted in lowered blood sugar, the results are significant enough to suggest a strong link between the positive effects of water consumption in controlling blood sugar levels, according to one of the researchers, Ronan Roussel, MD, PhD, professor of medicine at the Hospital Bichat in Paris.
If these outcomes are confirmed through subsequent studies, he said, “This is another good reason to drink plenty of water.”
The findings of the study were presented during the American Diabetes Association annual meeting.
In America, the CDC reports that approximately 79 million people are diagnosed with prediabetes, where blood sugar levels are above normal but not elevated enough to be deemed diabetes. Prediabetes is known to indicate a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes along with other medical conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke. There are 26 million Americans who been diagnosed with diabetes, according to the CDC.
During the study, participants were offered health examinations every three years and completed a questionnaire asking how much water, wine, beer-cider, and sugary drinks they drank. Blood sugar levels were measured at the start of the study and upon its conclusion after nine years. The study found that 565 of the 3,615 participants developed hyperglycemia.
Roussel, explains that a next step in this research should include a study of those who report that they don’t drink much water, with half of those agreeing to increase water consumption through a research study. The results of such a study would serve to help corroborate indications that drinking more water helps reduce prevalence of high blood sugar.
James R Gavin III, MD, PhD, clinical professor of medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, tells WebMD that more basic research into the link between drinking water and hyperglycemia is needed.
Please note that the findings of this study were presented at a medical conference, and they should be considered preliminary awaiting a “peer review” process, where independent experts scrutinize the data and findings prior to publication in a medical journal.