Risk of developing diabetes is inversely related to lung function: a population-based cohort study

Diabet Med. 2002 Feb;19(2):167-70. doi: 10.1046/j.1464-5491.2002.00652.x.


Aim: To investigate whether reduced lung function is a risk factor for developing diabetes.

Methods: Non-diabetic men (n = 382) from the population-based cohort 'Men Born in 1914' were examined with spirometry at age 55 years. The cohort was re-examined at 68 years. Diabetes and fasting plasma glucose at follow-up were studied in relation to vital capacity (VC) and forced expiratory volume (FEV1.0) at baseline.

Results: Fifteen men developed diabetes during the follow-up. The percentage with diabetes in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and top quartile of vital capacity were 7%, 5%, 2%, and 1%, respectively (P for trend = 0.01). Fasting glucose (log transformed, mmol/l) at follow-up was 1.63 +/- 0.16, 1.62 +/- 0.18, 1.61 +/- 0.11 and 1.60 +/- 0.11, respectively (P for trend = 0.11). The longitudinal associations between VC and diabetes (P = 0.001) and log glucose (P = 0.036) were significant after adjustments for several potential confounders. FEV(1.0) at baseline showed similar associations with diabetes at follow-up.

Conclusions: The risk of developing diabetes is inversely associated with pulmonary function among middle-aged men.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Blood Pressure
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus / epidemiology*
  • Exercise
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Respiratory Function Tests*
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking
  • Sweden / epidemiology
  • Vital Capacity / physiology*


  • Blood Glucose