Trends in frequency of type 2 diabetes in Mexico and its relationship to dietary patterns and contextual factors

Gac Sanit. 2018 May-Jun;32(3):283-290. doi: 10.1016/j.gaceta.2017.08.001. Epub 2017 Nov 6.


Objective: To analyse the evolution of the frequency of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and its relationship to eating patterns in Mexico from 1961 to 2013, and the Gini coefficient, Human Development Index (HDI) and Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Mexico ranked sixth in world prevalence of diabetes in 2015 with an estimated 11.4 million Mexicans affected.

Method: Using data from the Balance Sheets Food published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the means of apparent food consumption (kcal/person/day) were grouped by decades. Data for mortality rate for diabetes were obtained from 1990 until 2015. Spearman's correlation coefficient was calculated between the diabetes mellitus mortality rate and all food groups. Pearson's correlation explored the relationship between socio economic indicators and the prevalence of T2D diabetes.

Results: The mortality rate for T2D has increased over the last decades. An increase of 647.9kcal/person/day in apparent food consumption was observed. Cereal and legume consumption decreased, while apparent sugar, animal food and animal fat and vegetable oil consumption increased substantially. HDI and GDP showed a directly proportional relationship to diabetes. Spearman's correlation coefficient was statistically significant only for sugar. The Gini coefficient suggests that in lower inequalities there is an increased frequency of diabetes.

Conclusions: The increase in the mortality rate of type 2 diabetes was constant during the study period, which coincides with the increase in energy density of Mexican eating patterns from 1961 to 2013. The higher the Gini coefficient, HDI and GDP, the higher the mortality observed for diabetes.

Keywords: Diabetes; Eating habits; Indicadores; Indicators; Patrones alimentarios; Socioeconomic; Socioeconómicos.

MeSH terms

  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology*
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mexico / epidemiology
  • Time Factors