Minority ethnic groups - understanding diet, weight and type 2 diabetes: scoping review

A scoping review to support our understanding of diet, weight and type 2 diabetes in minority ethnic groups in Scotland, their access and experiences of services to support weight management and type 2 diabetes, and recommendations for change.


A scoping review was conducted rather than a typical literature review involving the application of specific search terms to a set of databases. This was because the scope of the project was very broad and within a limited timescale (3 months). The aim of this scoping review was to give an overview of the key themes and the gaps in our knowledge of ME communities and diet quality, weight status and the prevalence of type 2 diabetes. As such this scoping work could be used to inform policy discussion and specification of future more systematic reviews on the subthemes presented in the following sections.

This scoping work involved three main approaches. Firstly, a mapping exercise was carried out to identify:

  • the key sources of information and databases - ScotPHO, Public Health Scotland, Scottish Diabetes Survey, Scottish Migrant and Ethnic Health Research Strategy Group (SMEHRS), Scottish Health Survey;
  • the main bodies and organisations operating in this field - Race and Health Observatory, Food Standards Scotland, Glasgow Centre for Population Health (GCPH), Diabetes UK, Diabetes in Scotland,, DESMOND, BEMIS, Community Food and Health (Scotland);
  • the main Scottish university research centres dealing with health inequalities - Centre for Population Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh; MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Science Unit, University of Glasgow;
  • and academics carrying out research in this area

Once these had been identified, relevant grey and academic literature were read. Further references were obtained from hand searching academic paper reference lists and forward citations to look for other and more recent publications.

Thirdly, informal conversations were conducted with a range of experts and key informants, who helped in developing a better understanding of the key themes and identifying further relevant sources of information.



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