Author(s): Tang TS, Brown MB, Funnell MM, Anderson RM
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Abstract PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to examine social support and its relationship to diabetes-specific quality of life and self-care behaviors in African Americans with type 2 diabetes. METHODS: The study followed a cross-sectional, observational design and recruited 89 African American adults, age 40 and older (mean = 60, SD = 10.5), diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Participants completed measures assessing diabetes-specific quality of life, self-care behaviors (healthy eating, physical activity, self-monitoring of blood glucose, foot care, medication and/or insulin use), demographic background, and diabetes-related social support. Diabetes-related social support variables included amount of social support received, satisfaction with support, positive support behavior, negative support behavior, and primary source of support. RESULTS: Stepwise regressions, controlling for demographic variables, were conducted to identify predictors of diabetes-specific quality of life and self-care behaviors from the diabetes-related social support variables. Satisfaction with support was a predictor for improved diabetes-specific quality of life (r = -.579, P < .001) and blood glucose monitoring (r = .258, P < .05). Positive support behavior was a predictor for following a healthy eating plan (r = .280, P < .05), spacing out carbohydrates evenly throughout the day (r = .367, P < .01), and performing physical activity at least 30 minutes per day (r = .296, P < .05). Negative support behavior was a predictor for not taking medication as recommended (r = -.348, P < .01). CONCLUSIONS: Findings indicate that social support plays a role in diabetes-specific quality of life and self-management practices. Social support encompasses multiple dimensions that differentially influence specific diabetes health-related outcomes and behaviors.
This article was published in Diabetes Educ
and referenced in Journal of Diabetes & Metabolism