Smoking and the risk of type 2 diabetes

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Despite accumulating evidence demonstrating strong epidemiologic and mechanistic associations between cigarette smoking, hyperglycemia, and the development of type 2 diabetes, tobacco abuse has not been uniformly recognized as a modifiable risk factor in diabetes prevention or screening strategies. In this review, we highlight population-based studies that have linked cigarette smoking with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and summarize clinical and preclinical studies offering insight into mechanisms through which cigarette smoking and nicotine exposure impact body composition, insulin sensitivity, and pancreatic β cell function. Key questions for future studies are identified and strategies for smoking cessation as a means to decrease diabetes risk are discussed.

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