Risk of Hyperglycemia and Diabetes after Early-Life Famine Exposure: A Cross-Sectional Survey in Northeastern China.Int J Environ Res Public Health 2018; 15(6)IJ
Previous studies suggested that malnutrition during early life may play an essential role in later outcomes and disease risk in adulthood. We aimed to investigate the risks of hyperglycemia and diabetes 50 years after early-life famine exposure in a Northeastern Chinese population. We used the data from 5690 adults born between 1956 and 1965 in selected communities from a 2012 cross-sectional study. The early-childhood exposure cohort showed an increased risk of hyperglycemia compared with the unexposed cohort in the female population (odds ratio (OR) 1.46; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.04, 2.06). The increased risk of diabetes in the early-childhood and fetal exposure cohorts was 37.0% (95% CI 1.05⁻1.79) and 50% (95% CI 1.15⁻1.96), respectively. For women, the risk of diabetes was more pronounced in the fetal-exposed cohort (OR 1.82; 95% CI 1.26⁻2.63) than in the early-childhood cohort (OR 1.57; 95% CI 1.08⁻2.26). Early-life exposure to famine increased the risk of diabetes. Furthermore, early-childhood exposure to famine might increase the risk of hyperglycemia in women. A policy for preventing early life malnutrition should be drafted by the government to prevent hyperglycemia and diabetes in adulthood.