Study: Diabetes growing fast among U.S. Latinos

A new report from Temple University says that diabetes is expected to grow by 200 percent in the U.S. over the next 40 years, with Latinos seeing the fastest growing rate of any racial or ethnic group.

The report suggests that Latinos are most affected because of acculturation, or the process of adopting the behaviors, attitudes and values of a different culture. Montefiore Medical Center's Dr. Joel Zonszein says immigrants tend to come to large, urban cities where they may walk less and eat more fast food.

The study says more than 20 percent of Mexican-American adults, the largest subgroup of U.S. Latinos, have diabetes. That's compared to 11 percent for non-Hispanic whites and nearly 19 percent for non-Hispanic blacks. Doctors say that the Bronx is a hot spot for the disease, with 14 percent of adults in the borough living with diabetes.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, risk factors for diabetes include being overweight or obese, having a relative with diabetes, having high blood pressure, having abnormal cholesterol and being physically inactive. Zonszein says if someone feels that they are at risk for diabetes, they should get screened by their primary doctor. Montefiore will also be hosting some events in November in honor of National Diabetes Month.

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