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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

CUNY Faculty and Students Review Lifestyle and Therapy Evidence in Treating Diabetes

Dr. Terry T.-K. Huang, professor at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy recently published a report that reviews the evidence of lifestyle and drug therapies in improving glucose, insulin, and insulin sensitivity. His co-authors were Ms. Emily Ferris, and an incoming DPH student, and Ms. Devanshi Tripathi, a current MPH student, both at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy. The work was published in Current Diabetes Reports.

[Photo: Dr. Terry Huang]

Preventing and managing youth-onset type 2 diabetes are a major challenge. The research team reviewed forty-four interventions, of which 11 were drug (mainly metformin) interventions combined with lifestyle while the remainder used lifestyle strategies only. Fewer than a dozen out of 44 interventions reported significant improvements in glucose-related outcomes. Metformin in addition to lifestyle therapy did not necessarily enhance intervention effects. The overall lack of findings can be partially attributed to the heterogeneity of study populations, the lack of intervention intensity, under-powered study design, and the challenging lives of at-risk populations. The team concluded that new treatment options in both drugs and lifestyle strategies are direly needed.