What is the study about?
Type 2 diabetes is very common in New Zealand and is a leading cause of ill health. 1 in 4 Kiwis have ‘pre-diabetes’ which can develop into diabetes. Rates of pre-diabetes and diabetes are highest in Māori, Pacific and Indian people. It is very important that we understand why diabetes is more common in these groups, so that we can find better ways to prevent and treat it.
We know that people from different ethnicities tend to have different body composition (body make up). For instance, Pacific people have more muscle, while Indian people may carry more weight around their tummies. It is possible that our different body composition causes us to process glucose (sugar) in different ways.
This study will look at how well people of different body composition process glucose before and after a weight loss diet. We hope that the results will help us see whether a diet change alone is the best treatment for pre-diabetes for people of different body type or ethnicity in NZ. The results could help prevent diabetes.
What does the study involve?
- 5-7 visits to the University of Otago, Wellington Campus for investigations including blood tests, a DXA scan (to calculate body fat), measurement of energy expenditure (how many calories you burn at rest) and a continuous glucose monitor to measure your blood sugar levels.
- Following a low calorie ‘Optifast’ diet with the aim of losing 10% body weight
- Completing questionnaires about your activity levels and diet
- Providing feedback about your experience during the study
- Wearing a Fitbit wrist device to measure your activity levels and sleep patterns
Who can take part in this study?
We are looking for NZ European, Māori, Pacific or South Asian men aged 18-65. We want men with either ‘pre-diabetes’ or diet controlled Type 2 diabetes (not on diabetes medication). You may not be able to take part if you have certain heart or lung conditions, take steroid medications or if you have lost or gained over 5kg recently.
What are the benefits of taking part in this study?
- You will personally benefit from this study by being given medical support to lose weight, using the Optifast diet.
- The study will also help to further our knowledge of why people of different body composition and ethnicities develop diabetes.
- We will provide parking and petrol vouchers to contribute to travel costs.
- You will be able to keep your Fitbit wrist meter at the end of the study
Who is conducting this study?
This research is being conducted in Wellington by a group of experienced researchers from the University of Otago. The researchers have experience in the area of diabetes and obesity research.
Associate Professor Jeremy Krebs – Endocrinologist and Associate Professor of Medicine
Dr Patricia Whitfield – Endocrinologist and Clinical Research Fellow
Dr Rosemary Hall – Endocrinologist and Senior Clinical Lecturer
Dr Brian Corley – Clinical Research Fellow and Endocrinology Advanced Trainee
Associate Professor Yu-Chieh Shieak Tzeng – Director Centre for Translational Physiology
Professor Mark Weatherall – Professor of Medicine and Statistician
Fiona Hood – Research Assistant
Ethics and Funding
This study has been approved by the Central Health and Disability Ethics Committee.
It is primarily funded by the University of Otago and the New Zealand Society for the Study of Diabetes.