Race and Diabetes


Anchor lead: Different
ethnicities have differing rates of diabetes, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Your risk of developing type 2 diabetes may depend in part
on your race or ethnicity, a recent study found. Rita Kalyani, a diabetes
expert at Johns Hopkins, explains.

Kalyani: This study really broke down what are the ethnic
subgroups that may have higher or lower prevalence of diabetes? In non-Hispanic
whites, the prevalence was 12.1%, in non-Hispanic blacks it was 20.4%, for
Hispanics it was 22.1%, and for non-Hispanic Asians it was 19.1%. So there was
wide variability, perhaps most strikingly is that about one-quarter to
one-third of the diabetes was undiagnosed. 

Of particular note, the study showed that those of Asian
descent were most likely to have diabetes even at what is considered to be a
normal body mass index, or BMI, so more intensive screening in this population
may be appropriate. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.