Relationship between family meal frequency and individual dietary intake among diabetic patients.
Sommaire de l'article
BACKGROUND: Notoriously, the island of Mauritius has one of the highest prevalence of diabetes in the world. Management of the disease is very important and family meals are undoubtedly beneficial to patients as they promote the development of healthy eating behaviours and food choices. This study has aimed to probe into potential relationship(s) between family meal frequency and individual dietary intake among diabetic patients and to establish whether family cohesion may be a plausible mediator of this relationship.
METHODS: A cross-sectional survey was carried out with a random sample of 384 diabetic patients. The Family Adaptability and Cohesion Evaluation Scale III was used to obtain information on two general aspects of family functioning, that is, cohesiveness and adaptability. Chi-squared (χ (2)) tests, independent sample t-tests and one-way ANOVA were used to determine statistical significance. Pearson correlation was used to examine associations between family meal frequency, individual dietary intake and family cohesion. Hierarchical linear regression models were performed for the mediation analysis.
RESULTS: Family meal frequency (breakfast, lunch and dinner) was observed to be positively associated with intake of fish, raw vegetables, dried and fresh fruits, low-fat milk, cheese, yogurt, nuts and light butter and negatively associated with intake of red meat, white rice, white bread, whole egg fried, chocolates, fried cakes, burgers, chips, and fried noodles/rice. Average mediation (52.6 %) was indicated by family cohesion for the association between family meal frequency and individual dietary intake among diabetic patients. Sobel's test further confirmed the trend towards complete mediation (z = 15.4; P < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: A strong relationship between family meal frequency and individual dietary intake among diabetic patients was recorded. The present study is one of the few studies that have examined family cohesion as a mediator of the relationship and to our best knowledge is the first work to demonstrate a trend towards complete mediation. Results obtained can be used by health professionals to devise strategies for increasing knowledge and awareness of both diabetic patients and their respective families to curd down this public health burden.