MORAINE, Ohio (WDTN) — April is National Minority Health Month, and though the focus this year has been on the COVID-19 pandemic, other diseases, like diabetes, are also disproportionately affecting the African American community.
“Approximately 4.9 million African Americans have diabetes in the United States, making up 19 percent of the African American population,” said Dr. Milinda Zabramba, the program medical director at Miami Valley North Hospital. “Which, compared to non-Hispanic whites, is about 7 percent.”
According to Zabramba, African Americans are 77 percent more likely to get type II diabetes. The American Diabetes Association reports those with diabetes are more likely to have serious complications with any virus, including COVID-19.
To avoid the worst of it, Zabramba advises regular doctors visits to check on whether or not you’ve developed diabetes — especially for people who have family members that suffer from the disease.
Regardless of diagnosis, it’s recommended that people continue eating well and getting exercise. Zabramba encourages employers to incentivize this type of behavior, but also urges people to take it upon themselves.