Type 2 Diabetes as Environmental Racism

More than a Conspiracy Theory

Could it be that Type 2 Diabetes is a weapon used to hold down minorities? Is intentional misinformation about diabetes a form of environmental racism? It seems far-fetched when you first hear it. But here is the case. The facts might surprise you.

Causes of Type 2 Diabetes

There are many causes to Type 2 diabetes. Obesity, sedentary lifestyle, family history and bad diet are the most known causes. But one cause that most people don’t know about is animal fat. New research suggests that animal fat may be the main cause of Type 2 Diabetes.

If you ask most people what they think causes Type 2 Diabetes they will probably say it’s sugar. They are only partially right about this. The American diet is high in sugar and carbohydrates. All of these empty calories can certainly lead to weight gain and even obesity. Obesity is a risk factor for Type 2 Diabetes. But our American diet is also heavy on animal products. Most of us eat a meat-rich and dairy-rich diet. All of the animal fat that we consume is a big big problem.

Animal Fat Raises Blood Sugar

A study was conducted with two groups given a controlled diet. One group was given a high sugar and carbohydrate diet. The other group was giving a high animal fat diet. Within two days the high animal fat diet group had seen their glucose intolerance skyrocket. In fact, they had twice the blood sugar as the high sugar group!

It turns out that animal fat builds up in our muscles and blocks the insulin from being able to transfer sugar out of our blood. The fat that blocks this sugar transfer is called intramyocellular lipid. The result is that the sugar gets stuck in our blood and builds up which leads to Type 2 Diabetes.

Poor Minorities Eat Poor Quality Food

It’s probably no surprise to anyone reading this that the worst quality food is found in the poorest areas of our country. Places that are poor tend to have the highest concentration of fast food restaurants and the lowest concentration of supermarkets and farmers markets which have fresh produce. The poorest areas of our country also have the most minorities.

Considering these facts, it isn’t a coincidence that poor black people, poor Hispanic people and other poor minorities have higher rates of Type 2 Diabetes. They also have higher mortality rates from Type 2 Diabetes. This poor quality, high animal fat food is literally killing them.

Type 2 Diabetes as Inequity

Type 2 diabetes becomes an issue of equity. White people and people of high economic means are able to afford better food and avoid this terrible disease. But poor minorities don’t have access to high quality food nor can they afford it.   This inequity is killing them.

Is that fair? Should your economic status or the color of your skin determine your life expectancy?  No! Why should one group or one area of our country get better food than another? Shouldn’t access to high quality food be a right for every American?

The Government Lies About Diabetes

Another angle to consider is the misinformation that is consistently pushed on people about diabetes.  The American Diabetes Association states that their mission is to “prevent and cure diabetes” but if you click on their meal planner, you’ll find recipes like bacon covered shrimp, sweet and smoky baked eggs, brisket with wine reduction and other meat- heavy recipes!

The American Diabetes Association is actually suggesting that people with Type 2 Diabetes eat more animal fat!

I don’t think this is ignorance.  They must know that high animal fat is the main cause of Type 2 Diabetes. If people with this disease eat bacon covered shrimp, they are going to die even faster. And they are going to suffer terribly along the way.

So why is our government funded American Diabetes Association lying to diabetic patients?

Diabetes as Environmental Racism

If you put all of these facts together it paints a very grim picture. Poor minorities are being deprived of high quality food. They are getting Type 2 Diabetes at a much higher rate. They are dying from Type 2 Diabetes at a much higher rate. And our own government is encouraging them to eat a diet that will make their diabetes get even worse.

It almost seems like our government wants minorities to get sick and die. Yes, I said it. This appears to be yet another example of environmental racism.

Politicians have known about this inequality in quality food access for a very long time. They haven’t done much of anything to address the problem. Sure, there are school programs that teach a balanced diet. But how can a poor minority child eat a balanced diet when they don’t have access to quality fruits and vegetables in their community?

We, as Americans, are supposed to be equal. It goes against our core values when we allow one segment of our population to get sick and die because of inequity. It also goes against our core values when we stand idly by while our government lies to diabetic patients. This environmental racism has to stop.