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Eating Less Sugar Cuts Diabetes Risk in Latinos

Saturday, October 24, 2009 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
Tags: Latinos, health news, Natural News


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(NaturalNews) Latino teenagers can decrease their risk of diabetes by eating less sugar and more fiber, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Southern California and published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

Researchers divided 66 overweight Latino teenagers into three groups. The first group was assigned to take a once-a-week nutrition class for 16 weeks, the second was assigned to the same class as well as twice-a-week strength training, and the third group was not assigned to any behavioral modifications. All participants were told that the study was an investigation into the effect of diet on diabetes risk, and received both regular phone calls and non-health related incentives to encourage them to stick with the study.

The nutrition classes focused on directing the participants to reduce their sugar intake and increase their fiber intake.

The researchers found that sugar intake decreased by an average of 55 percent in all three groups, and fiber intake increased by an average of 59 percent in all three groups. The researchers speculated that teenagers in the control group might have modified their behavior because they knew the purpose of the experiment.

"Given that the [control] group demonstrated similar dietary changes as the intervention groups, our results suggest that intensive interventions may not be necessary to achieve modifications in sugar and fiber intake," the researchers wrote. "Accordingly, nutritional guidance given in the primary care or community setting may be sufficient to promote the suggested dietary changes in some individuals."

Teenagers who reduced their intake of sugar experienced a significant reduction in blood levels of both glucose and insulin, significant risk factors for Type 2 diabetes. Their insulin secretion decreased by an average of 33 percent.

Teenagers who increased their fiber intake experienced significant decreases in both weight and body fat. Visceral fat, also a diabetes risk factor, decreased by 10 percent.

Sources for this story include: www.reuters.com.

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