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Study Finds Association Between Diabetes and Depression

New research indicates an association between diabetes and depression. A study at a medical school in [the eastern U.S. state of] Maryland found that people with one condition are more likely to develop the other. VOA's Carol Pearson has the details.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore say some patients may need to be treated for both diabetes and depression simultaneously.

That is because they found a link between the two conditions.

Dr. Sherita Golden and a team of researchers followed 5,000 patients over a three-year period.

The researchers found that those participants who had feelings of hopelessness, poor sleep and loss of appetite, all symptoms of depression, were more likely to develop type two diabetes than those without such symptoms.

Dr. Golden says depression seems to prevent people from taking care of their health.

"People who had depression were more likely to overeat and were less physically active," Dr. Golden said.

And these behaviors increase the risk of developing type two diabetes.

The researchers also found the reverse to be true: people with type two diabetes were more likely to suffer from depression than those without the disease.

Rosalyn Terborg-Penn can attest to that. She has been battling diabetes for years. She has to continually monitor her blood sugar levels and take insulin.

"Sometimes I'm overwhelmed to the point where I just have to go to bed and take a break," Terborg-Penn said.

"People who have treated diabetes are potentially at risk for developing depression, and once they develop depression that may actually impact their ability to care for their diabetes," added Dr. Golden.

The full report is in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Some Video Courtesy Of The Journal Of The American Medical Association