Comparison of nutrient intakes in South Asians with type 2 diabetes mellitus and controls living in the United States

Meena Shah, Chandna Vasandani, Beverley Adams-Huet, Abhimanyu Garg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Aims: Despite having a high risk for type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), little is known about the relationship between nutrient intakes and T2DM in South Asians (SA) in the U.S. In addition, the available data are limited to a few macronutrients and collected using subjective measures. Therefore, we compared macro- and micro-nutrient intakes of SA migrants with and without T2DM using an objective measure. Methods: SA in the U.S. with T2DM (n = 44) and controls (n = 33) reported their dietary intake using image-assisted dietary assessment method. They took pictures of all foods/drinks consumed on two weekdays and one weekend day. Age, gender distribution, and body mass index were similar across the two groups. Results: SA with T2DM, as compared to controls, consumed less total energy (mean difference: 499 kcal/d; p <.0001), linoleic acid (3.6 g/d; p =.003), dietary fiber (8.6 g/d; p <.0001), vitamin A (262 µg/d; p =.003), vitamin E (2.7 mg/d; p =.007), calcium (133 mg/d; p =.01), magnesium (116 mg/d; p <.0001), zinc (1.4 mg/d; p =.004), potassium (754 mg/d; p <.0001), and β-carotene (1761 µg/d; p =.03). SA with T2DM, as compared to controls, were significantly more likely not to meet the requirements for linoleic acid, dietary fiber, vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and potassium (p <.05). Conclusions: SA with T2DM, compared to controls, consume less total energy and have lower consumption of many nutrients associated with reduced risk of T2DM. Dietary interventions to reduce risk for T2DM are warranted in SA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-56
Number of pages10
JournalDiabetes Research and Clinical Practice
StatePublished - Apr 2018


  • Dietary fiber
  • Minerals
  • Nutrient intakes
  • South Asians
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Vitamins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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