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American Journal of Men's Health

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This study used focus-group methodology to seek understanding about the unique influence of stress, gender, and culture on type 2 diabetes mellitus (t2dm) prevention and management among Black men. Twenty men from Iowa were recruited from a larger longitudinal study on Black families; each of these men participated in one of three focus groups. Ninety-five percent of the men in the sample were Black and all were either diagnosed with t2dm (n = 10), were prediabetic (n = 1), or had experience with t2dm through family and friends (n = 9). Our results revealed the existence of significant stress and some pessimism with respect to perceived ability to prevent and manage t2dm. The participants made it clear that, while their families are primary sources of support for managing stress, including t2dm, they can also be a source of stress, particularly with respect to parenting. Black men had mixed opinions on their relationships with respect to their health care providers; some had positive, long-standing relationships while others reported little or no relationship with their providers. In response to life stress, Black men reported experiencing inadequate and disrupted sleep as well as consuming too much alcohol at times. Some of the participants reported engaging in physical activity to manage their stress. The study concluded that, as researchers develop t2dm prevention and management programs, they should continue to consider the unique role that stress in its various forms, plays in the lives of Black men.


this is a manuscript for an article from American Journal of Men's Health, 2015; doi: 1557988315580132. Posted with permission.

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