Fast food, supermarkets and diabetes: an interesting link

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Do you know that living near many fast-food restaurants can increase your chance of getting a disease called type 2 diabetes?

A large study in the United States recently found this out.

What is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a health problem where your body can’t use sugar properly. This can cause a lot of health issues over time, like heart disease or even blindness.

The Link Between Our Neighborhoods and Our Health

Recent studies show that our surroundings, like the type of stores or restaurants near our homes, can affect our health.

People living in neighborhoods with lots of fast-food outlets are more likely to get chronic diseases, like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers.

Supermarkets and Health

The study also found out that having more supermarkets around could protect us from developing type 2 diabetes, especially in suburban and rural areas.

Supermarkets usually have healthier food options compared to fast-food restaurants.

The Big Study

This study was special because it involved more than 4 million veterans living all across the United States.

It’s also the first study to look at different types of neighborhoods (like city, suburban, and rural) and the availability of fast-food restaurants and supermarkets in these areas.

Diabetes Among Veterans

In this study, the health status of the veterans was followed for about five and a half years. During this time, about 13.2% of them were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

Males got diabetes more than females, and non-Hispanic Black adults had the highest incidence of diabetes.

Can More Supermarkets Reduce Diabetes?

This research shows that the availability of fast-food restaurants and supermarkets can affect the risk of developing diabetes.

It also shows that this effect can vary depending on how urban a community is. However, it doesn’t seem to differ by region.

The Next Steps

The researchers plan to dive deeper into the impacts of our surroundings on the risk of diabetes.

They want to see if the links between fast-food restaurants, supermarkets, and neighborhood types differ by gender, race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.

Remember, even though this study involved veterans, the findings might also apply to non-veterans.

However, more studies are needed to confirm this, as veterans are mostly men and often have more health problems compared to the general population.

This study shows how important it is to have healthier food options in our neighborhoods. Having more supermarkets and fewer fast-food restaurants might help reduce the risk of diseases like type 2 diabetes.

The study was published in JAMA Network Open.

If you care about diabetes, please read studies that MIND diet may reduce the risk of vision loss disease, and Vitamin D could benefit people with diabetic neuropathic pain.

For more information about diabetes, please see recent studies that Vitamin E could help reduce blood sugar and insulin resistance in diabetes, and results showing diabetes drug metformin may slow down cognitive decline.

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