Title

Impact of diabetes disclosure on perceptions of eating and self-care behaviors

Abstract

PURPOSE This study investigated whether disclosure of diabetes and gender influenced perceptions of eating and self-care behaviors. METHODS A vignette was developed in which a hypothetical friend engaged in diabetes self-care behaviors during a meal. Respondents (231 young adults) read vignettes that varied according to a 2 x 2 design (male vs female, preventative disclosure vs nondisclosure of diabetes). Participants answered 12 questions, which resulted in 2 factors: concern for friend and encourage professional help. RESULTS Significantly higher scores resulted on the concern for friend and encourage professional help factors when diabetes was not disclosed. Female characters also received significantly higher scores on the concern for friend factor. CONCLUSIONS Individuals with diabetes who choose to disclose their illness may prevent negative or incorrect perceptions related to self-care and eating behaviors, and may have a decreased likelihood that a true eating disorder would be identified by others. © 2002, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.

Publication Title

The Diabetes Educator

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