The oral diabetes drug metformin may improve insulin sensitivity in overweight and obese adolescents with Type 1 diabetes, according to a small new study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
The researchers randomly assigned 37 youth (ages 12–19) with Type 1 diabetes and overweight or obesity to receive three months of daily metformin or placebo (inactive treatment). Compared with placebo, metformin resulted in “significantly greater improvements” in insulin sensitivity.
“[W]e demonstrated that the addition of metformin to insulin therapy in overweight or obese youth with Type 1 diabetes improves whole-body and specifically peripheral muscle [insulin deficiency and resistance] over a 13-week period,” noted the researchers. “However, alternative approaches are likely needed to target the hepatic [insulin deficiency and resistance] of overweight/obese youth with Type 1 diabetes.”