Low doses of aspirin reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes in older people. This conclusion was made by scientists from Australia, after conducting a large and long-term study.
Its results have not yet been published, scientists are presenting it these days at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) in Hamburg.
Diabetes has a new enemy
Scientists observed more than 16 thousand people aged 65 and older. They were all relatively healthy for their age. Half of them made up the control group, in which people were “treated” with a dummy pill (placebo). The rest took aspirin 100 mg per day. This is the typical dose used by the elderly to prevent heart attacks. When aspirin lowers the temperature, it is taken in five times the amount – 500 mg. Naturally, in a smaller dose it is better tolerated and less likely to cause stomach bleeding. As a result, many millions of heart patients around the world take between 75 and 150 mg of aspirin daily and throughout their lives.
The study lasted 4.7 years. During this time, 995 cases of diabetes were registered (among those taking aspirin in 459 people, in the placebo group in 536). That is, aspirin reduced the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 15%.
“In initially healthy older people, aspirin reduces the incidence of diabetes and slows the rise in fasting plasma glucose,” states the results. research leader Sophia Zungas from the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University Melbourne.
One drug against “a hundred diseases”
Because this is only the first such study, low-dose aspirin will not yet be recommended for all older people to prevent diabetes. But given that they are taken by millions of people with heart disease, they have another aspirin “bonus”: now it protects them not only from heart attacks and certain types of cancer, but also from type 2 diabetes.
Here it is worth recalling separately the anti-cancer effect of this drug. Studies have shown that with long-term constant intake of low doses of aspirin, it reduces the risk of developing malignant tumors of the stomach, colon, esophagus, pancreas, prostate in men and ovaries, breasts and uterus in women. Moreover, in people with a high risk of colorectal cancer, the drug is officially prescribed for preventive purposes.