Carbohydrate-food knowledge of Emirati and Omani adults with diabetes: Results of a pilot study

Habiba I. Ali, Roos M. Bernsen, Sara Taleb, Basma Al Azzani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


There is limited research on nutrition knowledge related to diabetes management in persons with diabetes in the United Arab Emirates and other Arabian Gulf countries. Carbohydrate - containing foods have the greatest impact on post-meal blood glucose levels. The purpose of this exploratory study was to determine nutrition knowledge related to carbohydrate-containing foods of adults with diabetes in Oman and the United Arab Emirates. A culturally-appropriate questionnaire was used to assess carbohydrate - food knowledge in a convenience sample of 94 Emirati and Omani men and women with diabetes (age (mean± s.d.): 50 ± 13.5 years) residing in the cities of Al Ain and Al Bureimi. Carbohydrate-food knowledge score (mean± s.d.) was 6.3 ± 2 (maximum 14), reflecting low knowledge of food sources of carbohydrate. Ninety-three percent of the study participants believed that whole wheat bread does not increase their blood glucose levels and 88% of them did not think that unsweetened fruit juices can increase blood glucose levels. Further, scores for the Omani citizens were significantly lower than those of Emirati counterparts, mean difference 2.3 (95% confidence interval:1.5-3.1). Significant (p<0.05) differences in carbohydrate food knowledge scores between the 2 groups were found for 5 of the 14 food items assessed. The results of this study underscore the importance of nutrition education programs for persons with diabetes in these 2 communities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-28
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Diabetes and Metabolism
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Carbohyrate
  • Diabetes
  • Nutrition knowledge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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