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South Asians in US more prone to cardiovascular diseases and diabetes

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Washington: South Asians in US are more prone to heart attacks and diabetes when compared to other ethnic groups, as highlighted in a health congress here.

The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) has highlighted various preventive healthcare initiatives at the First World Congress on Preventive Healthcare 2015 in Houston, Texas.

Aimed at creating global awareness about preventive healthcare, the three-day Congress held from July 10-12 was part of the North American Bengali Conference (NABC) 2015, organized by Tagore Society of Houston.

The Congress highlighted that one American dies every 40 seconds in the US from cardiovascular diseases. A disproportionate burden of this risk is seen in the 3.4 million South Asians who live in the US.

The risks for heart attacks and cardiovascular deaths can be up to five times higher for South Asians when compared to other ethnic groups.

The total number of people with diabetes is projected to rise from 171 million in 2000 to 366 million in 2030.

In 2012, 29.1 million Americans, or 9.3 percent of the population, had diabetes and 13 percent of Asian Indians had diabetes.

While South Asians have a one in three lifetime risk for developing diabetes, total costs of diagnosed diabetes in the US in 2012 were $245 billion.

Dr. Sumita Chowdhury, chairperson for the Congress, appealed to the South Asian community to help conquer the epidemics of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes by joining the the South Asian Cardiovascular Registry.

Bringing together all stakeholders in the healthcare to formulate a shared vision towards prevention of disease, the Congress was intended to create sustainable measures for prevention that can be adapted worldwide and integrated into the fabric of life.

The forum was a way to evaluate the factors contributing to the increased disease risk among South Asians and help to formulate awareness campaigns to help modify risk factors that are specific to this ethnic group.

AAPI President Dr Seema Jain, highlighted various initiatives taken by the largest ethnic association of medical professionals in the US, in America and in India for preventing health risks and bringing the best healthcare to millions of people.

An estimated 1.2 million physicians of Indian origin working around the world have made enormous contributions to the world of healthcare, she said.

Jain pointed out that Indian-Americans constitute less than one percent of the population in the US, but they account for nearly nine percent of the physicians in the country.

Serving in almost all parts of America, they are estimated to provide healthcare to over 40 million patients in the US, she said.

(IANS)

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Optimism May Lower Diabetes Risk in Postmenopausal Women: Study

The prevalence of diabetes increases with age, with a 25.2 per cent prevalence in those aged 65 years or older

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The study included 4,697 mothers and 4,832 children. (IANS)

While it is known that a positive personality can help one succeed in life, a new study suggests that traits such as optimism may actually help reduce the risk of developing Type-2 diabetes.

The study examined whether personality traits, including optimism, negativity, and hostility, were associated with the risk of developing Type-2 diabetes in postmenopausal women.

Depression and cynicism were found to be associated with an increased risk of diabetes.

In addition, high levels of hostility were associated with high fasting glucose levels, insulin resistance, and prevalent diabetes.

For the study, published in the journal Menopause, researchers followed 139,924 postmenopausal women amongst which 19,240 cases of Type-2 diabetes were identified.

Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay

Compared with women who were least optimistic, women who were the most optimistic had a 12 per cent lower risk of incident diabetes, results showed.

In addition, the association of hostility with the risk of diabetes was stronger in women who were not obese compared with women who were.

Hence, low optimism, high negativity and hostility were associated with increased risk of incident diabetes in postmenopausal women, independent of major health behaviours and depressive symptoms, the study concluded.

Also Read- It is Now Possible to Reverse Memory Loss Caused by Alzheimer’s, Says Study

“In addition to using personality traits to help us identify women at higher risk for developing diabetes, more individualised education and treatment strategies should also be used,” said Joann Pinkerton, executive director at The North American Menopause Society.

The prevalence of diabetes increases with age, with a 25.2 per cent prevalence in those aged 65 years or older. (IANS)