Higher Blood Sugar in South Asians

HbA1c and other measures of blood sugar higher in South Asians

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Ethnicity matters when it comes to your risk of diabetes. While researchers do not know exactly why some ethnic groups have a higher diabetes risk, they do know that white Europeans often have a lower risk than other groups.

A new study shows that South Asians have higher blood sugar levels than white Europeans.

This finding suggests that South Asians may have a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

"Eat healthy and stay active to control your blood sugar."

According to Samiul A. Mostafa, MBCHB, of the University of Leicester in the UK, and colleagues, most ethnic groups have higher HbA1c levels (a measure of blood sugar over three months) than white Europeans. However, it was unclear how blood sugar levels among South Asians compare to those among white Europeans.

Mostafa and colleagues set out to study this comparison.

They found that South Asians had higher levels of three measures of blood sugar: HbA1c, fasting plasma glucose, and two-hour plasma glucose.

The fasting plasma glucose test measures blood sugar levels after a person has not eaten for at least eight hours. The two-hour plasma glucose test measures blood sugar levels two hours after a person eats.

These findings suggest that South Asians should be monitored more closely for factors that increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.

This study, which included 4,688 white Europeans and 1,352 South Asians, was published in Diabetes Care, a journal of the American Diabetes Association.

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Review Date: 
June 27, 2012
Last Updated:
November 29, 2012