Researchers have revealed that regular exercise and a healthy diet along with culturally sensitive care can assist in the control and prevention of diabetes. Based on latest analysis, the findings suggest that considering language and culture, patients from ethnic minorities perform better at diabetes education. The ethnic factor coupled with a healthy diet and routine exercise helps to prevent diabetes.
A combination of moderate weekly exercise with lower fat and high fibre diet was prescribed to 2,241 study participants by Dr. Didac Mauricio, a researcher from the Hospital Universitari Arnau de Vilanova in Spain. After an eight study review of the data, the researcher found a relative reduction of 37 % in the risks of developing type 2 diabetes. Additionally, the researcher also found that all participants had reduced their waist size, lost weight and improved their blood pressure. All these factors play a vital role in the risks of developing diabetes.
The researcher however mentioned that the changes in diet and exercise were carefully monitored by dieticians and exercise physiologists. Hence it was still unclear about the performance of these interventions outside the trial.
Lucide Neild and colleagues of the University of Teesside in England conducted a second review which was published in the latest issue of The Cochrane Library. In this case patients were given a diet low in sugar and rich in fruits and vegetables. Results showed that in the six year study, the incidence of type 2 diabetes was lowered by 33 % among the participants.
Lucie Nield commented, “Despite the current situation we are facing with the diabetes epidemic, there are not enough long-term data available to come to any confident conclusions.”
The researcher and her colleagues however concluded that an important role may be played by dieticians in getting people to stick with a healthy eating plan. Regular visits to the dieticians every three to six months during the study could also have helped patients.
Dr. Yolanda Robles, an academic fellow at Cardiff University, led a third review to comprehend the significance of educating patients about the disease in their native language. The researchers emphasized on whether the health of ethnically minor diabetic patients would improve if members from their own community utilized health education materials adapted to their culture.
Dr Robles remarked, “However, it should be borne in mind that we still do not know the necessary dose of health education needed or the level of reinforcement of messages to ensure continued benefits. Longer term studies, with more patient-centered outcomes, are needed.”
With a eleven study analysis on 1603 participants, researchers found that there was a noteworthy reduction in blood glucose (sugar) levels of the patients by “culturally appropriate” education. The effect however was a short term one, not lasting for more than a year.
A healthy diet, moderate exercise and combination education strategies apparently do have a positive impact on the health of diabetics or those prone to the disease.