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Link found between skeleton and diabetes

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If you suffer from type 2 diabetes, your skeleton might just be to blame for it. The skeleton consistently breaks down old bone and builds new bone. When this process occurs, a hormone called osteocalcin is released, which has been found to regulate glucose levels in the blood.

Researchers at Columbia Medical Center have found that when a body’s skeleton breaks down old bone to make way for new bone a regular amount, osteocalcin will better regulate the sugar in the blood. When not enough osteocalcin is released (because the bone renewal process is slow), it has an effect on the blood’s glucose levels.

According to the study leader, Dr. Gerhard Karsenty, osteocalcin essentially triggers insulin production. Insulin helps cells absorb the sugar (energy) from the blood.

Patients who have low bone density and suffer from osteoporosis take medication that can reportedly inhibit the production of osteocalcin, putting them at a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.

The implications of the study are tremendous, Dr. Karsenty told the BBC. “This research has important implications for both diabetes and osteoporosis patients,” he said.

“First, this research shows that osteocalcin is involved in diabetes onset. Secondly, bone may become a new target in the treatment of type 2 diabetes as it appears to contribute strongly to glucose intolerance

“And finally, osteocalcin could become a treatment for type 2 diabetes.”

Find out more about type 2 diabetes.

Celebrities who suffer from type 2 diabetes include Halle Berry and Brittany Murphy.

Celebrities who suffer from type 1 diabetes include Nick Jonas and Bret Michaels.

What is type 1 diabetes?

Images: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Foot_x-rays.jpg

http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1187803

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