Physical Activity and Reported Barriers to Activity Among Type 2 Diabetic Patients in the United Arab Emirates

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Abstract
The Review of Diabetic Studies,2009,6,4,271-278.
Published:February 2010
Type:Original Article
Authors:
Author(s) affiliations:

Juma Al-Kaabi1, Fatma Al-Maskari2, Hussein Saadi1, Bachar Afandi3, Hasratali Parkar3 and Nicolaas Nagelkerke2

1Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University, United Arab Emirates.

2Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University, United Arab Emirates.

3John Hopkins Medicine International Tawam Hospital, United Arab Emirates.

Abstract:

Objectives: This study was designed to assess the physical activity practice among type 2 diabetic patients in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Methods: This is a crosssectional study of type 2 diabetic patients who participated in the outpatient clinics in Al-Ain District, during 2006. The patients completed an interviewer-administered questionnaire, and measurements of blood pressure, body mass index, body fat, abdominal circumference, glycemic control (HbA1c), and fasting lipid profile. Results: Of the 390 patients recruited, only 25% reported an increase in their physical activity levels following the diagnosis of diabetes, and only 3% reported physical activity levels that meet the recommended guidelines. More than half of the study subjects had uncontrolled hypertension (53%) and unacceptable lipid profiles; 71% had a high low-density lipoprotein (LDL), 73% had low high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and 59% had hypertriglyceridemia. Forty-four percent were obese and a further 34% were overweight. Abdominal obesity was also common (59%). Only 32% had an acceptable glycemic control. Conclusion: The physical activity practice of type 2 diabetic patients in the UAE is largely inadequate to meet the recommended level necessary to prevent or ameliorate diabetic complications. Interventions aiming at overcoming the barriers to physical activity are urgently needed.