"Diabetes is my companion": Lifestyle and self-management among good and poor control Mexican diabetic patients

Javier Garcia de Alba Garcia, Ana L Salcedo Rocha, Ivette Lopez, Roberta D. Baer, William Dressler, Susan Weller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Scopus citations


This paper identifies naturally occurring lifestyle and self-care practices in managing type 2 diabetes mellitus that are associated with good glycemic control. In-depth, qualitative interviews were conducted in Guadalajara, Mexico, with 31 matched pairs of good and poor control diabetic patients (n=62), who were matched on their duration of disease and use of medications. While many themes were listed by both groups, a comparison of the responses indicated that themes of daily exercise with a preference for walking, eating beef and milk rather than chicken and fish, economic issues, and emotional issues distinguished poor-control patients. Good-control patients were more likely to have a negative reaction to their initial diagnosis, take a more comprehensive approach to control, eat only two meals a day (plus snacks), use noncaloric beverages to satisfy desires for more food, and know what their blood sugar levels should be.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2223-2235
Number of pages13
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2007



  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Glycemic control
  • Hispanics/Latinos
  • Mexico
  • Qualitative research
  • Self-management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Social Psychology
  • Development
  • Health(social science)

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