Antidepressant drugs increase the risk of type 2 diabetes among those at high risk of the disease, a re-analysis of part of the large-scale Diabetes Prevention Program study found.
The study involved three groups of people -- over 3,000 in all -- at high risk of diabetes. One group was a lifestyle intervention group, another a placebo, and the third group was given the diabetes drug metformin (Glucophage).
The risk of type 2 diabetes increased two to three times among those in the placebo and lifestyle groups who took antidepressants, compared to those in the metformin group.
All types of antidepressants, including tricyclic and SSRIs, increased the type 2 diabetes risk.
Although a cause-and-effect link could not be proven at this time, the finding does show a clear association between taking antidepressants and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes among those at high risk. The reason behind the association is not known.
In an unrelated study, it was found that the antidepressant Prozac, which is often used to treat anorexia, is not effective for the disorder. In the year-long study, only 27 percent of 49 women given Prozac maintained a normal weight and finished the study, compared to 32 percent of 44 women given a placebo.