Diabetes: Nicotine

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered at on 16 May 2024.

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Photo of Rachael Maskell Rachael Maskell Labour/Co-operative, York Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment she has made of the potential relationship between nicotine and type II diabetes.

Photo of Andrea Leadsom Andrea Leadsom The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

Studies have shown that smokers are 30% to 40% more likely to get type 2 diabetes than people who don’t smoke. Smoking can also make managing the condition more difficult, because high levels of nicotine can lessen the effectiveness of insulin. Such studies have focussed on the impact of nicotine contained within cigarettes, rather than alternative nicotine delivery methods, and the National Health Service recommends that smokers with diabetes should try to quit.

As stated during the Tobacco and Vapes Bill Committee on 14 May 2024, the Department is currently exploring research options to address these evidence gaps in the short, medium, and longer term. I will be setting out further details on this very soon.

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