Self-reported dietary intake of youth with recent onset of type 2 diabetes: results from the TODAY study

J Acad Nutr Diet. 2013 Mar;113(3):431-439. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2012.11.015.


Despite the widely recognized importance of diet in managing diabetes, few studies have documented usual dietary intake in young people with type 2 diabetes. The objectives of our study were to assess dietary intake among a large, ethnically diverse cohort of young people with type 2 diabetes and compare intake to current recommendations. The Treatment Options for Type 2 Diabetes in Adolescents and Youth (TODAY) study is a multicenter randomized clinical trial of 699 youth aged 10 to 17 years. At baseline, following a run-in period that included standard diabetes education, diet was assessed using a food frequency questionnaire between 2004 and 2009. Analysis of variance and nonparametric tests were used to compare mean and median nutrient intakes; logistic regression was used to compare the odds of meeting predefined dietary intake recommendation cutpoints between subgroups of age, sex, and race-ethnicity. Percent of energy from saturated fat was consistently 13% to 14% across all subgroups-substantially exceeding national recommendations. Overall, only 12% of youth met Healthy People 2010 guidelines for intake of <10% of energy from saturated fat and only 1% of youth met American Diabetes Association recommendations for intake of <7% of energy from saturated fat. Dietary intake fell substantially below other Healthy People 2010 targets; only 3% met calcium intake goals, 11% met fruit consumption goals, 5% met vegetable consumption goals, and 67% met grain intake goals. Overall, dietary intake in this large cohort of young people with type 2 diabetes fell substantially short of recommendations, in ways that were consistent by sex, age, and race-ethnicity. The data suggest a critical need for better approaches to improve dietary intake of these young people.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anthropometry
  • Child
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / diet therapy*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / etiology
  • Diet / adverse effects
  • Diet / standards
  • Diet / statistics & numerical data*
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage
  • Energy Intake
  • Ethnicity / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Fruit
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Nutrition Assessment*
  • Nutrition Policy*
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vegetables


  • Dietary Fats