COMPARATIVE ANALYSES OF BEVERAGE CONSUMPTION IN THE PUERTO RICAN ADULT POPULATION
Sheilyann Roldan Fontanez, Nichole Sanchez, Javier Arce.
University of Puerto Rico in Cayey, Cayey, PR.
Obesity and diabetes are public health problems in Puerto Rico. Previous studies link the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages to obesity, excess weight, and diabetes. The purpose of the study is to investigate the beverage consumption in the adult rural population of Puerto Rico. We conducted 146 interviews between June and August of 2012. The participants answered a questionnaire with questions about self-reported weekly beverage consumption and perceptions of water quality. We statistically analyzed our data and compared our results to previous studies published in the U.S. and Latin America. As observed in minority groups in the U.S. and Mexicans, our study group consumed an average of more than 500 kcal a day from beverages. Our study suggests that Puerto Ricans are consuming extreme levels of high-caloric beverages which may be contributing to the higher prevalence of obesity and diabetes.