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Energy well spent fighting the diabetes epidemic


Stannard, SR and Johnson, NA, Energy well spent fighting the diabetes epidemic, Diabetes-Metabolism Research and Reviews, 22, (1) pp. 11-19. ISSN 1520-7552 (2006) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1002/dmrr.574


As the global burden of type 2 diabetes increases, medical science races to comprehensively understand its molecular aetiology. We suggest that the apparent struggle to seek a pharmacological or molecular victory to the diabetes epidemic is a flawed strategy given that evolution has already provided us with the best medicine. Recent molecular evidence highlights the interaction between muscle fatty acid kinetics in dictating whole body insulin action. Insights from an evolutionary perspective suggest that the ability of the body to evoke insulin resistance and store energy as fat within muscle cells is a normal physiological response to aid our survival during food or carbohydrate scarcity, but this 'hunter-gatherer physiology' predisposes to diabetes in a modern environment characterized by ample food availability and muscle inactivity. We contend that the true value of physical activity in the prevention and treatment of insulin resistance has been missed by the medical community because scientific investigation has been constructed upon physical activity recommendations that were never intended for this purpose. These recommendations provide a level of metabolic stress insufficient to be compatible with the expectations of our genes. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Medical physiology
Research Field:Cell physiology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Johnson, NA (Dr Nathan Johnson)
ID Code:34345
Year Published:2006
Web of Science® Times Cited:15
Deposited By:Health Sciences A
Deposited On:2005-07-27
Last Modified:2010-03-16

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