Type 2 diabetes burden among migrants in Europe: unravelling the causal pathways – published online 16/10/2021
Charles Agyemang, Eva L. van der Linden, Louise Bennet
Type 2 diabetes is a major global burden and some populations have been particularly affected. In this issue, Agyemang et al (https://doi.org/10.1007/s00125-021-05586-1) summarise the burden of type 2 diabetes and its related complications, and the potential explanatory mechanisms among migrants in Europe. Analysis of the current evidence suggests that type 2 diabetes and related microvascular and macrovascular complications remain a major burden among migrant populations in Europe. Evaluation of culturally adapted lifestyle modification diabetes interventions among migrants are limited and mainly focus on South Asian populations. Migrants tend to be more aware of their diabetes status but their glycaemic control remains suboptimal compared to Europeans. These observations call for investment in prospective studies and basic scientific research as well as culturally adapted lifestyle modification intervention trials to gain insight into the causal pathways linking migration to the development of type 2 diabetes and to facilitate prevention and treatment efforts in Europe. The figures from this review are available as a downloadable slideset.