Original Research

Physical activity and diet for Type 2 Diabetes reduction among older people living with HIV in Harare

Nongiwe L. Mhlanga, Thinavhuyo R. Netangaheni
Health SA Gesondheid | Vol 29 | a2445 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hsag.v29i0.2445 | © 2024 Nongiwe L. Mhlanga, Thinavhuyo R. Netangaheni | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 May 2023 | Published: 14 February 2024

About the author(s)

Nongiwe L. Mhlanga, Department of Health Sciences, College of Human Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa
Thinavhuyo R. Netangaheni, Department of Health Sciences, College of Human Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa

Abstract

Background: People living with HIV (PLWH) are ageing, and face increased risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes. Physical activity and diet are effective in reducing Type 2 Diabetes risk. However, there is variation in how older PLWH engage in physical activity and healthy eating.

Aim: To describe older PLWHs’ engagement in physical activity and diet for Type 2 Diabetes risk reduction in Harare

Setting: The study was conducted in five polyclinics in Harare urban district from low socio-economic areas.

Methods: A qualitative approach and an exploratory descriptive design was used. Twenty-three participants were selected purposively based on the researchers’ judgement of age among PLWH. Data were collected using a semi-structured interview schedule and analysed using Braun and Clark’s six steps of thematic content analysis. Ethical approval was obtained, and each participant provided informed consent.

Results: The mean age of participants was 62 years. Participants performed varied physical activities through; economic activities, walking, exercise, and domestic chores. Diet included indigenous, unrefined grains, vegetables and fruit, influenced by rural background. Diet consisted of larger proportions of carbohydrates with lesser varying portions of protein and vegetables and fruit. Healthy eating among participants was facilitated by the proximity of markets and family.

Conclusion: Health education to reduce Type 2 Diabetes risk should focus on fostering current physical activities to meet prescribed standards and increasing fruit and vegetable consumption.

Contribution: The physical activity and diet self-care practices among older PLWH are inadequate in reducing Type 2 Diabetes risk, emphasising the need for appropriate health education.


Keywords

diet; older people living with HIV; physical activity; reduction; Type 2 Diabetes

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 3: Good health and well-being

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