Does Lecturing Older Adults with Diabetes about a Healthy Lifestyle Work?

Carla Miller, PhD, RD, Associate Professor, Department of Human Nutrition, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.

The translation of effective treatments for obesity and diabetes management into clinical care has been slow. However, self-management education and counselling regarding diet and physical activity can improve weight, blood glucose, and lipid levels, and blood pressure control among older adults with type 2 diabetes. A collaborative approach to counselling is more effective than simply lecturing in promoting and sustaining behaviour change. The five A’s to behavioural counselling—assess, advise, agree, assist, and arrange—provide a model for care. A key component of the five A’s for counselling is the development of an action plan that specifies goals and implementation intentions for behaviour change.
Key words: type 2 diabetes mellitus, older adults, behavioural research, patient education, behavioural therapy.