Studies reveal the far-reaching impact of social determinants of health on young and adult populations with diabetes

National Institutes of Health (NIH): Impact of Food Insecurity and Diet Quality on Diabetes

The ADA recommends that people with diabetes follow a high-quality diet to achieve diabetes treatment goals. Additionally, current research shows that Americans who have better access to nutritious foods experiencing lower diabetes rates on average. However, new research from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the NIH, finds that among a national sample of American adults with diabetes, more than 30% are food insecure and more one in six were both food insecure and had poor quality diets. Food insecurity refers to a lack of consistent access to enough food to lead an active and healthy life. Diet quality refers to the extent to which an individual’s diet aligns with federal dietary guidelines.

Researchers conducted a study of food insecurity, diet quality, and health indicators important for diabetes management, including A1C, blood pressure, and cholesterol control, using data of the national health and nutrition survey from 2013 to 2018.

Among US adults with diagnosed diabetes in this nationally representative sample, 15.3% lived below the poverty line, 19.3% were food insecure, and 50.7% had a poor quality diet. Food insecurity and poor diet quality were independently associated with suboptimal blood sugar (A1C) and lipid (low HDL and high triglyceride) management. Food insecurity had a stronger association with components of diabetes management than with diet quality.

“Food insecurity has a strong impact on people with diabetes, especially for people from racial and ethnic groups who already experience health disparities,” said NIDDK program director and author Jean Mr. Lawrence, ScD, MPH, MSSA. “We hope these findings will encourage health care providers to include an assessment of food insecurity as part of their overall diabetes treatment and move towards treating the whole person, including the determinants. of health, which is essential for advancing health equity.”

Dr. Lawrence also notes that future research on food insecurity in adults with diabetes could focus on how interventions to reduce food insecurity affect metabolic outcomes and address the multiple pathways that may contribute to these. results.

Racial Residential Segregation and Young Blacks with Type 1 Diabetes

In the United States, marginalized communities are disproportionately exposed to neighborhood environments that are associated with diabetes risk, highlighting the impact of place of residence for people with diabetes. New research on Chicago, Ill. and Detroit, Michigan shows that black adolescents with type 1 diabetes living in more racially segregated areas have poorer diabetic health.

The study assessed racial residential segregation (RRS) – a form of structural racism that includes limited access to resources and increased exposure to stress – and the association with diabetes management and glycemic control in young black people with the condition. type 1 diabetes. The study recruited a sample of 144 patients from seven pediatric clinics with an average age of 13.3 years. Diabetes management was assessed by youth self-report using the Diabetes Management Scale. The RRS was calculated at the census block group level based on US Census data using location quotients (LQs). The average QL of the patients was 3.04 (SD = 1.49), which indicates that their residence is located in very segregated neighborhoods.

The results suggest that RRS was predictive of diabetic health in young black people with type 1 diabetes, even after controlling for the effects of family income and neighborhood adversity. Young black people with type 1 diabetes who resided in more racially segregated neighborhoods had higher A1C.

“Our results indicate that persistent residential segregation contributes to health inequalities for American children with diabetes,” said Deborah EllisPhD, Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences, Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. “This reinforces the need for health care providers to identify and address the social determinants of health in order to effectively meet the care needs of children as we work to reduce the burden of type 1 diabetes at scale. national.”

The authors note that advocacy and policy development are needed to address inequities and improve the health of the general diabetic population.

Details of the research presentation:

For more information or to request an interview, please contact the ADA The media team of the Scientific Sessions at [email protected].

About ADA Scientific Sessions
The ADA 82n/a Scientific Sessions, the world’s largest scientific meeting focused on diabetes research, prevention and care, will be a hybrid event taking place June 3-7, 2022 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, LA. Leading doctors, scientists and healthcare professionals from around the world will unveil cutting-edge research, treatment recommendations and advances towards a cure for diabetes. We look forward to getting back to participating in person and safely networking with colleagues while listening to the latest scientific advances and groundbreaking research presentations. Learn more and register at and join the Scientific Sessions conversation on social media using #ADA2022.

About the American Diabetes Association
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization fighting to bend the curve of the diabetes epidemic and help people with diabetes thrive. For 81 years, the ADA led discovery and research to treat, manage and prevent diabetes while working tirelessly for a cure. Through advocacy, program development and education, we aim to improve the quality of life for the more than 133 million Americans with diabetes or prediabetes. Diabetes brought us together. What we do next will make us connected for life. To learn more or to get involved, visit us at or call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383). Join the fight with us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Spanish Facebook (Asociación Americana de la Diabetes), LinkedIn (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn).

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SOURCE American Diabetes Association

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