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Association of a Healthy Lifestyle With All-Cause and Cause-Specific Mortality Among Individuals With Type 2 Diabetes: A Prospective Study in UK Biobank

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posted on 09.12.2021, 22:00 by Han Han, Yaying Cao, Chengwu Feng, Yan Zheng, Klodian Dhana, Shu Zhu, Cong Shang, Changzheng Yuan, Geng Zong
Objective: To evaluate the association of a healthy lifestyle, involving seven low-risk factors mentioned in diabetes management guidelines (no current smoking, moderate alcohol consumption, regular physical activity, healthy diet, less sedentary behavior, adequate sleep duration, and appropriate social connection), with all-cause and cause-specific mortality among individuals with type 2 diabetes.

Research Design and Methods: This study included 13,366 participants with baseline type 2 diabetes from the UK Biobank free of CVD or cancer. Lifestyle information was collected through a baseline questionnaire.

Results: During a median follow-up of 11.7 years, 1,561 deaths were documented, with 625 from cancer, 370 from CVD, 115 from respiratory disease, 81 from digestive disease, and 74 from neurodegenerative disease. In multivariate-adjusted model, each lifestyle factor was significantly associated with all-cause mortality and hazard ratios (95% CIs) associated with the lifestyle score (scoring 6-7 vs. 0-2 unless specified) were 0.42 (0.34, 0.52) for all-cause mortality, 0.57 (0.41, 0.80) for cancer mortality, 0.35 (0.22, 0.56) for CVD mortality, 0.26 (0.10, 0.63) for respiratory mortality, and 0.28 (0.14, 0.53) for digestive mortality (scoring 5-7 vs. 0-2). In the population-attributable-risk analysis, 27.1% (95% CI: 16.1, 38.0%) death was attributable to a poor lifestyle (scoring 0-5). The association between a healthy lifestyle and all-cause mortality was consistent, irrespective of factors reflecting diabetes severity (diabetes duration, glycemic control, diabetes-related microvascular disease, and diabetes medication).

Conclusions: A healthy lifestyle was associated with a lower risk of mortality due to all-cause, CVD, cancer, respiratory disease, and digestive disease among individuals with type 2 diabetes.


This study was supported by grants from the National Key Research and Development Plan of China (2018YFC1604404) and the Programs of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KJZD-EW-G20-01, XDB38000000, KLNMFS2020-01, KLNMFS2019-02). GZ was supported by the National Science Fund for Excellent Young Scholars (81922060) and the Talent Introduction Programme of Chinese Academy of Sciences. The funding sources had no role in study design, in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data, in the writing of the report, or in the decision to submit the article for publication.