Obesity and diabetes

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

While reading "Utahns reminded of diabetes dangers on World Diabetes Day" (Tribune, Nov. 15), the high rate of diabetes in Utah's Pacific Islander adult population caught my attention. These statistics are not surprising, if the mean income of our Pacific Islander population is taken into consideration.

There is a strong, negative correlation between income and obesity, which goes hand-in-hand with diabetes. Utah's economically strapped minority groups are forced to eat unhealthy, cheap food, and our Polynesian population is no different.

The article talks about bringing the issue of diabetes into the light through awareness events, but there is little talk of action being taken to change the behaviors that drive this medical issue. To end the connection between poverty, diabetes and other health risks that come with the consumption of unhealthy foods, we need to offer Utah's minority populations healthier foods at prices comparable to unhealthy foods.

If our Utah community can reverse the increasing rates of obesity and diabetes in our minority groups, we reduce the amount of money spent on the health problems that stem from this issue.

Sam Nolan

Salt Lake City