Improving Glycemic Control Can Decrease Risk of Fractures
Diabetes has been identified as a risk factor for fractures as a result of falls.
These would commonly be to the hip, wrist, and spine. The risk of hip fracture is increased to about 6x the general population for people with type 1 diabetes and 3x for those with Type 2. During puberty, people with diabetes may suffer from a significant decrease in bone mass development due to lack of insulin production. Regardless of age, rapid bone loss is often seen within the first few years of type-1 diagnosis.
So how exactly does glucose control help?
Elevated blood sugar is associated with diminished bone mineral content, impaired vitamin D and calcium metabolism, and reduced activity of cells (osteoblasts) that help promote bone growth and repair.
According to a recent study of people with T1D published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, those with poor glycemic control were at an increased fracture risk than those with better glycemic control. And in people with T2D, damage to small and large blood vessels also increased fracture risk.
In addition to improving glucose control, you can reduce your risk of bone fractures by including calcium and Vitamin D in your diet and performing weight-bearing exercise (in a standing position or using weights). Have your doctor check your vitamin D levels. If they are low, ask about a supplement.
Integrated Diabetes Services is the worldwide leader in one-on-one consulting for people who use insulin. Diabetes “coaching” services are available in-person and remotely via phone and the internet for children and adults.