Diabetes in Hispanics
Diabetes mellitus is one of the most serious health challenges facing Hispanics and Latinos in the United States. It is the 6th leading cause of death within this community and the 4th leading cause of death among Hispanic women and Hispanic elderly.
Hispanics and Latinos are at a higher risk of developing and dying from diabetes, and twice as likely as other populations to experience complications such as heart disease, high blood pressure, blindness, kidney disease, amputations and nerve damage In 2006, Hispanics were 1.7 times as likely to start treatment for end-stage renal disease related to diabetes, compared to non-Hispanic white men. In 2006, Hispanics were 1.5 times as likely as non-Hispanic white to die from diabetes.
Diabetes has an earlier onset in Latinos than in other populations. Among Puerto Ricans and Mexican Americans, the age of onset is 30 to 50 years old. More than 11% of all Mexican Americans 20 years or older have diabetes.
Among person aged 20 years and older, the prevalence rate for diabetes is:
- 13.3% for Mexican Americans
- 13.8% for Puerto Ricans
- 7.6% for Cuban Americans
- 7.1% for non-Hispanic whites
Excerpted and adapted from Diabetes in Hispanics/Latinos Fact Sheet, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
For more information:
- Check out Manny Hernandez's monthly column, "Hola Diabetes".
- Watch Dr. Aida Giachello speak about the effects of diabetes on the Latino community.
- Explore diabetes-friendly cooking with Latin flavor as CDE Lorena Drago shops at a Hispanic market.
- Learn more about eating right with diabetes within the Latino culture.
- Watch Don Francisco, host of Sabado Gigante, talk about his dLife.
Reviewed by Jason C. Baker, M.D. 4/11
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Occasionally my mailbox or follow-the-link browsing will come up with something discussing whether (and if so, when) to ease the restrictions on treatment goals when the patient is elderly, arguing either to favor a higher quality of remaining life (lifestyle choices less limited by chronic illness) or to take into consideration geriatric cognitive decline (aka "senility") and simplify, as much as possible, the regimen. While the goal of medicine is, obviously, not to...