Preventing type 2 diabetes among South Asian Americans through community-based lifestyle interventions: A systematic review

Shahmir H. Ali, Supriya Misra, Niyati Parekh, Bridget Murphy, Ralph J. DiClemente

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Ethnic South Asian Americans (SAAs) have the highest relative risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in the United States (US). Culturally tailored lifestyle interventions have the potential to promote South Asian diabetes prevention; however, the extent of their use and evaluation in US settings remains limited. This systematic review characterizes and evaluates outcomes of community-based lifestyle interventions targeted towards T2DM indicators among South Asians living in the US. A PRISMA-informed search of Pubmed, Embase, Cochrane, Web of Science, and clinical trial registry databases using key words pertaining to South Asians migrants and diabetes indicators (glucose and insulin outcomes) was conducted of community-based lifestyle interventions published up until October, 31 2019. Of the eight studies included in the final synthesis, four interventions focused on cultural and linguistic adaptations of past chronic disease prevention curricula using group-based modalities to deliver the intervention. Hemoglobin A1c (A1c) was the most common outcome indicator measured across the interventions. Three of the five studies observed improvements in indicators post-intervention. Based on these findings, this review recommends 1) greater exploration of community-based lifestyle interventions with high quality diabetes indicators (such as fasting blood glucose) in ethnic SAA communities, 2) expanding beyond traditional modalities of group-based lifestyle interventions and exploring the use of technology and interventions integrated with passive, active, and individualized components, and 3) development of research on diabetes prevention among second generation SAAs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101182
JournalPreventive Medicine Reports
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • Community health
  • Diabetes
  • Glucose
  • Insulin
  • Lifestyle
  • Migrants
  • South Asian

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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