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Int J Endocrinol. 2015;2015:903468. doi: 10.1155/2015/903468. Epub 2015 Oct 20.

Challenges of Diabetes Self-Management in Adults Affected by Food Insecurity in a Large Urban Centre of Ontario, Canada.

Author information

1
Ryerson University, 350 Victoria Street, Toronto, ON, Canada M5B 2K3.
2
University Health Network, 399 Bathurst Street, Toronto, ON, Canada M5T 2S8.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To explore how food insecurity affects individuals' ability to manage their diabetes, as narrated by participants living in a large, culturally diverse urban centre.

DESIGN:

Qualitative study comprising of in-depth interviews, using a semistructured interview guide.

SETTING:

Participants were recruited from the local community, three community health centres, and a community-based diabetes education centre servicing a low-income population in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

PARTICIPANTS:

Twenty-one English-speaking adults with a diagnosis of diabetes and having experienced food insecurity in the past year (based on three screening questions).

METHOD:

Using six phases of analysis, we used qualitative, deductive thematic analysis to transcribe, code, and analyze participant interviews.

MAIN FINDINGS:

Three themes emerged from our analysis of participants' experiences of living with food insecurity and diabetes: (1) barriers to accessing and preparing food, (2) social isolation, and (3) enhancing agency and resilience.

CONCLUSION:

Food insecurity appears to negatively impact diabetes self-management. Healthcare professionals need to be cognizant of resources, skills, and supports appropriate for people with diabetes affected by food insecurity. Study findings suggest foci for enhancing diabetes self-management support.

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