Vietnamese-Americans who are not obese are significantly more likely to have diabetes

A study released in the journal Chronic Illness found that non-obese Vietnamese-Americans are up to 60 percent more likely to have diabetes, as oppose to non-obese White and non-Hispanic Americans.

The study, conducted by the University of Toronto, involved the use of pooled data from the 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013-2016 waves of the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS).

The findings were strongly evident even after taking into account age, sex, sociodemographic factors, substance use, and fitness.

According to researchers, their data estimated that only 9 percent of Vietnamese-Americans with diabetes can be characterized as obese, having a body mass index (BMI) of 30.0 or higher.

The study also determined that non-obese Vietnamese-Americans are 60 percent more likely to have diabetes in comparison to non-obese non-Hispanic White (NHW) people. Furthermore, older adults, smokers, and foreign-born U.S. residents or Citizens are also at a heightened likelihood of diabetes.

“Non-obese Vietnamese Americans have much higher odds of diabetes than NHW,” the study states. “Health professionals can effectively minimize disparities between Vietnamese Americans and NHW with diabetes through appropriate monitoring of foot care, eye care and A1C levels.”

The study was authored by Leanne De Souza, Keith Chan, Karen Kobayashi, Alexis Karasiuk, and Esme Fuller-Thomson.

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