If you’re in the blood groups A, B and AB, you might be at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes than people with type O blood, according to findings published in the journal Diabetologia, reports a EurekAlert press release.

For the study, researchers from the Center for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health reviewed data from more than 82,000 women. These women were participants in a study of chronic diseases that followed almost 100,000 female teachers in France between 1990 and 2008. Scientists found that women classified in group A, B or AB blood type were more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than women who were in the type O blood group.

According to the study’s authors, no one knows why this happens. But researchers suggested that a number of factors might be responsible, such as the connection between blood group and specific molecules linked to type 2 diabetes. In addition, scientists also said blood group affects the composition of bacteria in the gut, a factor that affects metabolism and could relate to type 2 diabetes.

The study is the first one of its size to consider a link between blood type and type 2 diabetes. “Our findings support a strong relationship between blood group and diabetes risk, with participants with the O blood type having a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes,” said epidemiologist Guy Fagherazzi, PhD, a member of the researcher team.

The scientists said that in the future they’d like to see not only more studies on how blood groups affect diabetes, but also why people with type O blood are at a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Despite the rate of diabetes among American adults declining, for African Americans and Latinos the metabolic illness is still on the rise. Click here to read more.