Beverage-Consumption Patterns and Associations with Metabolic Risk Factors among Low-Income Latinos with Uncontrolled Type 2 Diabetes

Published:August 30, 2013DOI:


      In the United States, Latinos experience disproportionately higher rates of type 2 diabetes and diabetes-related complications than non-Latino whites. Sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption is strongly associated with increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Reducing caloric intake, particularly from energy-dense, low-nutrient foods or beverages, can be an effective and key strategy for metabolic and weight control. However, little is known about the contribution of various types of beverages, including but not limited to SSBs, to total caloric intake among Latinos with type 2 diabetes. Low-income Latinos (87.7% Puerto Rican) participating in a diabetes self-management intervention trial (N=238) provided cross-sectional, descriptive data on beverage-consumption patterns, anthropometric outcomes, and metabolic characteristics. Beverages accounted for one fifth of the total daily caloric intake. SSBs and milk beverages, respectively, contributed 9.6% of calories to overall daily caloric intake. Interventions directed at diabetes risk factors among low-income Latinos with diabetes can benefit from consideration of beverage-consumption behaviors as an important strategy to reduce caloric and sugar intake.


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      M. L. Wang is a research fellow, Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA.


      S. C. Lemon is an associate professor of medicine, Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA.


      B. Olendzki is an assistant professor of medicine, Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA.


      M. C. Rosal is a professor of medicine, Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA.