Population considerations:

  • History of gestational diabetes. Women are at risk of developing diabetes during pregnancy, which can increase risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life. In addition, the children of women who have gestational diabetes are at increased risk for overweight and Type 2 diabetes (Ritchie, 2003).
  • Family commitments. Women may place the health and welfare of their family first before taking care of their own health needs. Family commitments may limit the time spent on physical activity or eating a healthy diet (Simmons, 1996). 
  • Racial disparities. There is a disproportionate risk for diabetes among racial groups. There are often less effective behavioral treatment interventions for these groups, perhaps due to an inadequate sociocultural match between the intervention methods and the needs of different racial groups (Glazier, 2006).

  Strategies to address considerations:

  • Prenatal care. It is important for women to have appropriate screening for insulin resistance and diabetes before and during pregnancy so that, if needed, an early diagnosis can be made. Nutrition counseling and promoting physical activity are important in limiting excessive food and calorie intake before and during pregnancy. Breastfeeding promotion is another important effort, although its relative contribution to the prevention of type 2 diabetes remains to be seen (Ritchie, 2003).
  • Social support strategies. It may be helpful to incorporate family activities and other social support services, such as child care, when developing interventions for women (Bank-Wallace, 2002).

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