How common is diabetes among racial/ethnic groups?

December 20, 2019

Bottom Line: Estimating how common diabetes (both diagnosed and undiagnosed) was among U.S. adults by racial and ethnic groups was the objective of this observational study. A group of 7,575 adults 20 and older who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys between 2011-2016 were included. Among them, 2,266 people had diagnosed diabetes, and 377 had undiagnosed diabetes. The age-sex-adjusted proportion of adults with diabetes (diagnosed and undiagnosed) was 12.1% non-Hispanic white, 20.4% non-Hispanic black, 22.1% Hispanic, and 19.1% non-Hispanic Asian. The results also show that among selected Hispanic and non-Hispanic Asian subpopulations, there were noteworthy differences in how common diabetes was. The age-sex-adjusted proportion of adults with undiagnosed diabetes was 3.9% non-Hispanic white, 5.2% non-Hispanic black, 7.5% Hispanic, and 7.5% non-Hispanic Asian. Limitations of the study include diagnosed diabetes was self-reported, and there was a small sample of adults in some subgroups used for estimates.

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Authors: Yiling J. Cheng, M.D., Ph.D., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, and coauthors.


Editor's Note: The article includes conflict of interest and funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.
Media advisory: To contact corresponding author Yiling J. Cheng, M.D., Ph.D., email Alaina Robertson at The full study and editorial are linked to this news release.

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