Health Disposition, Signs Of Potential Nutrient Deficiencies And Lifestyle Characteristics Of Diabetic Adults Attending The Outpatient Clinic Of University Of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Enugu, Nigeria
*Henry-Unaeze, H.N.1 and Ngwu, E.K.2
1Department of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, College of Applied Food Sciences and Tourism, Michael Okpara
University of Agriculture Umudike, PMB 7267 Umuahia Abia State, Nigeria.
2Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria
*Corresponding author’s email address: [email protected]
Background/ Objective: The health and physical routine of an individual patient has implication on management of chronic diseases. This study investigated the health disposition, signs of potential nutrient deficiencies and lifestyle characteristics of out-patient type 2 diabetic adults.
Methodology: A total of 370 subjects were purposively selected from the Out-patients Diabetic clinic of University
of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Ituku-Ozalla, Nigeria. Physical examination and questionnaire were used to obtain
information of the medical disposition, potential signs of nutrient deficiencies and lifestyle characteristics. Data
obtained were analyzed with IBM SPSS statistics version 21) and presented with descriptive statistics.
Result: The results indicated that 71.4% of the patients had consulted a dietitian, 55% were on diet regime, 35.4%
were regular on medications, and 42.4% consider the drugs were many with side effects. Few were susceptible to
hypoglycemia (15.4%), frequent cold, and upper respiratory/urinary tract infections (17%). Very few (1.7% women)
had fibrocystic disease. Cracks on lip margin (16.8%), scaly, flaky seborrheic condition of the nose (17%),
Sore/burning tongue (9.2%), decreased taste acuity (9.2%), bleeding gum (28%) small red spots under their skin
(2.7%), easy bruising (9.7%), slow wound healing (6.8%), soft nails (3.2%), white spots on/under the fingers nails
(1.3), and ridges in the nails (4.9%), were the nutrient deficiency signs the patients experienced. Many (44.3%) desired weight reduction, 62.1% engage in regular exercise and 45.7% devise alternative exercise when they have health challenges. Some (60%) drank alcohol occasionally, and 97.3% were non-smokers. There was no relationship between being on expert-guided diet regime and ethnicity, physical activity and religion, physical activity and ethnicity, exercise type and ethnicity.
Conclusion: Nutritional deficiency signs were found in some adult outpatient diabetics, although their lifestyle
characteristics were commendable, management of these signs will make for effective diabetes control.
Keywords: health disposition, nutrient deficiencies; lifestyle factors, chronic disease; Type 2 diabetes; Out-patient