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How People Feel About Diabetes When They Don't Have It

morefocus recently surveyed people's attitudes towards diabetes. Nearly 700 answered questions regarding what they know and how they feel about the condition. Eight-three percent of respondents have one or more family member with diabetes.

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Interestingly, 30 percent of people look to health websites before talking to their doctor when seeking out information about diabetes. Unsurprisingly, people with at least one diabetic family member tended to be more informed: 67 percent claimed to be satisfied with their knowledge of diabetes. For those with a stronger knowledge of diabetes, medical journals tended to serve as their primary source of information.

People's biggest concern about possibly having diabetes revolved around potential long-term complications (24 percent). However, the second most popular anxiety lay in respondents not being able to eat what they might want. In fact, food and eating tended to be a general concern for most people. Seventy-four percent admitted that they would be more likely to eat at a restaurant that listed the nutritional information of its dishes on the menu.

morefocus' survey found that people without diabetes that have at least one diabetic in their family tend to be well informed, gathering their knowledge primarily from health websites. While they are primarily concerned about possible complications, dietary restrictions also proved to be an anxiety that would ultimately play a role in the restaurants people would chose.

Detailed Results

Attitudes Towards Diabetes Survey
Question/Answer Responses Percentage
Has one or more of your family members been diagnosed with diabetes? 585
Yes 487 83.25%
No 98 16.75%
Who was diagnosed with diabetes? (Select all that apply) 486
Child 95 19.55%
Spouse 96 19.75%
Parent 207 42.59%
Grandparent 136 27.98%
Brother/Sister 70 14.40%
Aunt/Uncle/Cousin 128 26.34%
Other 43 8.85%
I take better care of myself since my family member was diagnosed with diabetes. 477
Strongly Agree 95 19.92%
Agree 136 28.51%
Moderately Agree 125 26.21%
Neither Agree nor Disagree 67 14.05%
Moderately Disagree 22 4.61%
Disagree 24 5.03%
Strongly Disagree 8 1.68%
I appreciate my own life more since my family member was diagnosed with diabetes. 469
Strongly Agree 109 23.24%
Agree 155 33.05%
Moderately Agree 90 19.19%
Neither Agree nor Disagree 81 17.27%
Moderately Disagree 11 2.35%
Disagree 20 4.26%
Strongly Disagree 3 0.64%
What is your primary source for information about diabetes? (Select one) 573
Family/Friends 87 15.18%
Health web sites 164 28.62%
Doctor 120 20.94%
Diabetic counseling 41 7.16%
Books 54 9.42%
Newspapers/Magazines 35 6.11%
Television news 10 1.75%
Medical journals 62 10.82%
If you had diabetes, what do you think would be the biggest inconvenience? (Select one) 553
Needing to take medication (pills, insulin, etc.) 100 18.08%
Needing to test blood sugar 73 13.20%
Needing to exercise 11 1.99%
Not being able to eat what I want 118 21.34%
Working my daily schedule around diabetes 40 7.23%
Worrying about a hypoglycemic episode 30 5.42%
Worrying about possible complications 132 23.87%
Costs of consumable supplies 50 9.04%
Would you be embarrassed if a diabetic non-family member tested their blood sugar levels in front of you? 562
Yes 15 2.67%
No 528 93.95%
Not Sure 19 3.38%
An estimated 18.2 million Americans have diabetes, and 5.2 million of them don’t even know it. In your opinion, should the government provide free diabetic screenings to anyone who wants one? 550
Yes 475 86.36%
No 75 13.64%
Would you be willing to approve a tax increase to support free diabetic screenings? 463
Yes 221 47.73%
No 67 14.47%
Not Sure 175 37.80%
I am satisfied with my knowledge about diabetes. 550
Strongly Agree 67 12.18%
Agree 137 24.91%
Moderately Agree 174 31.64%
Neither Agree nor Disagree 47 8.55%
Moderately Disagree 64 11.64%
Disagree 48 8.73%
Strongly Disagree 13 2.36%
I would be more likely to eat at a restaurant if they offered a menu that listed the carbohydrate, calorie, fat, sodium and cholesterol contents of their food. 545
Strongly Agree 155 28.44%
Agree 157 28.81%
Moderately Agree 92 16.88%
Neither Agree nor Disagree 87 15.96%
Moderately Disagree 19 3.49%
Disagree 28 5.14%
Strongly Disagree 7 1.28%
What is your gender? 536
Male 140 26.12%
Female 396 73.88%
What is your age? 549
17 or younger 25 4.55%
18-24 49 8.93%
25-44 180 32.79%
45-64 248 45.17%
65 or older 47 8.56%
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Last modified 10 October 2006
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