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Diabetes Linked to Higher Parkinson's Risk

Studies Also Show Eating Soy Nuts May Reduce Inflammation After Menopause; Weight-Loss Surgery Improves Beta Cell Function, Reduces Insulin Resistance

ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 28, 2007 /PRNewswire/ -- People who have type 2 diabetes are more likely to develop Parkinson's disease as they age, though researchers are uncertain what accounts for the link between the two diseases, according to a new study being published in the April issue of Diabetes Care.

The study, by researchers in Finland, is the first large prospective study to find type 2 diabetes to be a risk factor for Parkinson's disease, a movement disorder characterized by muscle rigidity and tremors.

According to the authors, people with type 2 diabetes are 83 percent more likely to be diagnosed with Parkinson's than people in the general population. The study found the association between the two diseases existed for both men and women, independently of other confounding factors.

"Diabetes might increase the risk of Parkinson's disease partly through excess body weight," the researchers hypothesized, since their work showed that excess body weight was also associated with an elevated risk of Parkinson's disease. However, they concluded that more research needed to be done to fully understand the mechanisms behind this link.

Soy Nut Consumption Reduces Markers of Inflammation

Eating soy nuts instead of red meat decreases some markers of inflammation and improves endothelial function in postmenopausal women with a collection of cardiometabolic risk factors, a new study by researchers at Isfahan University of Medical Sciences in Iran and the Harvard School of Public Health found. In previous studies by the same group, subjects who ate soy nuts also showed improvements in their lipid profiles, suggesting that soy may improve cardiac health among a subgroup of women.

Previous research has looked at the effect of soy o
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