Socioeconomic status and gender affects utilization of medical nutrition therapy

Ronit Endevelt, Orna Baron-Epel, Anna Viner, Anthony David Heymann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aims: To identify socioeconomic status and gender inequalities in long and short-term Medical Nutrition Therapy among Israeli adult patients with diabetes. Methods: An analysis of data was performed on 90,900 patients over the age of 18 who were registered as patients with diabetes mellitus in Maccabi Healthcare Service Register which is the second largest health maintenance organization in Israel. Socioeconomic Rank for each patient was determined from the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics by geographical area of residence. Medical Nutrition Therapy was defined by the number of visits with registered dietitians. Short-term therapy was defined as one visit and long term therapy as two or more visits during the previous two years. Newly diagnosed patients were compared with veteran patients. Results: Only 25.8% of the patients with diabetes received nutrition therapy during the previous two years. Newly diagnosed patients received therapy more frequently than veterans. We found that long term therapy was positively dependent on socioeconomic rank. Women under the age of seventy five had a higher chance of receiving therapy compared to men. Conclusions: A nationwide nutritional counseling service is available and accessible to all patients with diabetes. However, the patients with higher socioeconomic rank have a higher rate of persistence with long-term nutritional therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-27
Number of pages8
JournalDiabetes Research and Clinical Practice
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Medical nutrition therapy
  • Persistence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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