Breaking it down even further, researchers identified the eight other diet-related factors contributing to rising global type 2 diabetes rates: insufficient intake of yogurt, fruits, nuts, seeds, and non-starchy vegetables, as well as overconsumption of unprocessed red meat, potatoes, sugary drinks, and fruit juices.
The study team also pinpointed a combination of social and demographic factors that were linked to higher rates of diet-related type 2 diabetes, including residing in an urban area and lower levels of education. Men were also found to be more susceptible to the condition than women. Furthermore, the researchers were able to isolate which countries were experiencing the greatest burden of diet-attributed type 2 diabetes. Central and eastern regions of Europe and central Asia had the highest percentage of proportional burdens of the disease at nearly 86%. This was followed by Latin America and the Caribbean at nearly 82%. Lowest proportional burdens were isolated to South Asia at 55.4%.
Overall however, the researchers emphasized that these study findings only illustrate correlation rather than causation. The authors went on to address existing health and disease disparities worldwide, particularly as it relates to nutrition security. The study team stated the need for educational interventions and social safety net programs that prioritize nutrition in countries most affected by type 2 diabetes.