Prenatal malnutrition increases diabetes risk

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Research carried out at the university of Wageningen shows that children who suffered from prenatal malnutrition have a greater chance of high blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes later in life. 

The team of researchers examined nearly 8,000 Chinese who suffered from moderate to serious malnutrition during the 1950s. The researchers distinguished between those who suffered from malnutrition as children and those who were already malnourished while in their mother's womb. Those who suffered from prenatal malnutrition were twice as likely to have diabetes as children who had already been born when food became scarce.

Earlier research already showed that Dutch people who suffered from malnutrition in the occupied Netherlands during the ‘Hunger Winter’ of 1944-1945 showed a higher incidence of diabetes and cardiovascular disease later in life. However, Russian scientists subsequently failed to confirm the Dutch results in a study of the effects of the extended siege of Leningrad St Petersburg during World War II.

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