A recent study from Rutgers, published in the June issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, shows that Hispanics have a two-fold risk over whites in developing type 2 diabetes due to poor nutrition.
Of the 200 Hispanic women involved in the study (most were of Puerto Rican decent) who were asked questions about their nutrition knowledge and understanding of type 2 diabetes, an alarming 50% had already developed type 2 diabetes and most had never seen a registered dietitian or diabetes health educator.
“The current findings suggest a need for nutrition education interventions in the study population. Moving beyond just preferring regular sugar vs. artificial sweeteners seems to be an obvious educational need. Saturated fat, fiber and daily food group intake recommendations need to be included in the educational interventions because these were among the topics that were least known to the participants.”
Cultural barriers, lack of access or awareness of available health services and health care expense are the primary obstacles for minority group, notes Rutgers researcher Nargul Fitzgerald.
“We don’t have enough services, we don’t have enough certified diabetes educators or nutritionists who can speak the language or who are culturally competent enough to work with [Hispanics],” adds Fitzgerald.
Other research has also demonstrated that Hispanics have a harder time controlling their type 2 diabetes. Read: Hispanics Have More Difficulty Controlling Type 2 Diabetes/Diabetes Than Non Hispanic Whites.