Exercise and other lifestyle habits of patients with type II diabetes mellitus in Jos, Nigeria
Background Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disorder with complications affecting millions of people worldwide. It has been projected that in the near future, it will affect people in the developing countries like Nigeria more than the developed world. Lifestyle modification including exercise is important in the management of this condition. The other lifestyle of patients with diabetes including cigarette smoking and alcohol ingestion also affects the glycaemic control and the development or worsening of complications in these patients
Methods This was a descriptive cross-sectional study carried out at the diabetes clinic of Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) and a diabetes specialist clinic in Jos, North central Nigeria. Ninety patients with diabetes aged 18 years and above were recruited consecutively. Wheel chair bound patients, patients who had amputation in the past and patients who did not consent to the study were excluded from the study. Data was obtained using an interviewer administered questionnaire
Results Fifty -four (60%) persons were males. The mean age was 56.8±11.5 years. 52.2 % participated in one form of exercise with 43 (91.5%) persons exercising for <150 minutes per week. The mean duration of exercise per week was 75.6 ±55.5 minutes. Those who exercised were younger, males and with lower HbA1c The . common form of exercise was walking. Barriers to exercise found include lack of time, pain/swelling in the legs, ill health and not knowing what exercise to do. Three (33.3%) out of the nine persons who took alcohol ingested it in significant amount and 1 (1.1%) person smoked cigarette.
Conclusion The exercise habit of patients with diabetes in this environment is poor with some persons taking alcohol in significant quantity and smoking cigarette. Education and counseling of these patients therefore are important and should be done at every given opportunity.
Key words: Diabetes mellitus, exercise, lifestyle habits.