Obesity, Diabetes, and Disability in Older Mexican Americans, 1993-2011
Nam, Sang gon
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Increases in obesity have been observed in both men and women, for all age groups and major ethnic groups, and at all educational levels. However, in Mexican Americans, the increased level of obesity only partially accounts for their higher prevalence of diabetes compared with non-Hispanic Whites. These high rates of both obesity and diabetes are also related to higher levels of disability in older Mexican Americans. Much of the previous research about associations between obesity, diabetes, and disability has focused on cross-sectional or short-term longitudinal studies of non-Hispanic populations to explain disparities by age, gender, and nativity. There have only been a few long-term longitudinal studies that have looked at obesity, diabetes, and disability among older Mexican Americans. Using data from the Hispanic Established Population for the Epidemiological Study of the Elderly (Hispanic EPESE) from baseline (1993-1994) to wave seven (2010-2011), this proposed study seeks to determine the effect of age, gender, and nativity differences on the relationship between obesity, diabetes, and disability among older Mexican Americans. This study found that the effect of obesity was less likely to have ADL disability as compared to non-diabetes among Mexico-born participants, and the effect of diabetes was less likely to have ADL disability as compared to non-diabetes among the young old group (65-74). In addition, subjects with obesity and diabetes were more likely to develop more ADL disability over time compared to subjects with diabetes only and subjects without obesity and diabetes. However, the development of ADL disability did not vary significantly across time between subjects with both obesity and diabetes compared to subjects with obesity only.