Type 2 diabetes has been shown to occur in response to environmental and genetic influences, among them nutrition; food intake patterns; sedentary lifestyle; body mass index; and exposure to persistent organic pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Nutrition is essential in the prevention and management of type 2 diabetes and has been shown to modulate the toxicity of PCBs. Serum carotenoid concentrations, considered a reliable biomarker of fruit and vegetable intake, are associated with the reduced probability of chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Our hypothesis is that fruit and vegetable intake, reflected by serum carotenoid concentrations, is associated with the reduced probability of developing type 2 diabetes in US adults with elevated serum concentrations of PCBs 118, 126, and 153. This cross-sectional study used the Center for Disease Control and Prevention database, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2003-2004, in logistic regression analyses. Overall prevalence of type 2 diabetes was approximately 11.6% depending on the specific PCB. All 3 PCBs were positively associated with the probability of type 2 diabetes. For participants at higher PCB percentiles (eg, 75th and 90th) for PCB 118 and 126, increasing serum carotenoid concentrations were associated with a smaller probability of type 2 diabetes. Fruit and vegetable intake, as reflected by serum carotenoid concentrations, predicted notably reduced probability of dioxin-like PCB-associated risk for type 2 diabetes.
Keywords: Environmental health; NHANES, type 2 diabetes; Nutrition; Polychlorinated biphenyls, PCBs; Serum carotenoids.
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