Short Report: Epidemiology
The association of physical inactivity with Type 2 diabetes among different ethnic groups
Article first published online: 16 MAY 2011
© 2011 The Authors. Diabetic Medicine © 2011 Diabetes UK
Volume 28, Issue 6, pages 668–672, June 2011
How to Cite
Admiraal, W. M., van Valkengoed, I. G. M., L de Munter, J. S., Stronks, K., Hoekstra, J. B. L. and Holleman, F. (2011), The association of physical inactivity with Type 2 diabetes among different ethnic groups. Diabetic Medicine, 28: 668–672. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-5491.2011.03248.x
- Issue published online: 16 MAY 2011
- Article first published online: 16 MAY 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 31 JAN 2011 10:21AM EST
- Accepted 19 January 2011
- Type 2 diabetes
Diabet. Med. 28, 668–672 (2011)
Aims To study differences in the association between physical inactivity and Type 2 diabetes among subjects from different ethnic groups.
Methods We analysed data on 508 Caucasian, 596 African-Surinamese and 339 Hindustani-Surinamese participants, aged 35–60 years, in the population-based, cross-sectional Surinamese in the Netherlands Study on Health and Ethnicity (SUNSET) study. Physical inactivity was defined as the lowest quartile of reported activity, measured with the validated Short Questionnaire to Assess Health-Enhancing Physical Activity. Type 2 diabetes was defined as fasting plasma glucose levels ≥ 7.0 mmol/l or self-reported diagnosis.
Results Physical inactivity was associated with Type 2 diabetes (OR 1.63, 95% CI 1.12–2.38) in the total group after adjustment for sex, age, BMI, ethnicity, resting heart rate, hypertension, smoking, history of cardiovascular disease, having a first-degree relative with Type 2 diabetes and educational level. However, this association was only significant in Caucasians (OR 3.17, 95% CI 1.37–7.30). Moreover, it appeared stronger in Caucasians than in Hindustani-Surinamese (OR 1.43, 95% CI 0.78–2.63) and African-Surinamese (OR 1.13, 95% CI 0.58–2.19), although the P-value for interaction was not significant.
Conclusions Physical inactivity was associated with Type 2 diabetes in the total group after adjustment for multiple risk factors, but this association was only significant in Caucasians. Also, it appeared stronger in Caucasians than in Hindustani and African-Surinamese, but formal testing for interaction provided no further evidence. These findings confirm the importance of exercise, but suggest that potential health gain may differ between ethnic groups. However, it should be noted that, in general, promotion of physical activity in populations with an increased a priori risk of Type 2 diabetes, remains of the utmost importance.