The Health Equity Quiz was harder than I was anticipating and I only got 2 of the questions correct. I was surprised by each statistic presented in this quiz but I was most shocked at how much money is spent per person on health care in the United States. Its exhausting to learn how much money is going into health care and yet the United States hasn’t been able to achieve better health outcomes, and the American health care system is perceived to be among the worst compared to other industrialized countries. Additionally, the economic disparity between the rich and the poor is also another taxing piece of information to learn.
“Bad Sugar” is a public impact campaign on Type II diabetes, which arises because the energy produced when insulin is used to convert glucose, the bloods sugar, isn’t used efficiently. The glucose builds up in the blood stream damaging blood vessels and leading to more serious health complications. This case study examines the Tohono O’odham American Indian Tribe’s high prevalence for this disease with at least half of this tribe developing Type II diabetes. More than their genes can explain this tribe’s heath disparity to Type II diabetes. Other influences on their health include their life-style choices and availability of and access to nutritious food and clean water.
The tribe was unable to continue to cultivate their own crops and work in the fields due to scarcity of water after water projects implemented on the Gila River eliminated the tribe’s main source of water. Processed foods became a surplus in this impoverished community where healthy food choices were limited. Their dietary habits alone could be a factor in this tribes spiked blood sugar levels. Moreover, stressors caused by their water problem increased this tribe’s prevalence for the disease because hormones are released when stressed that activate glucose production. Also, another non-genetic factor could be this tribe’s attitude. By believing they will eventually be diagnosed with diabetes they may have lost focus in taking care of themselves.