THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN NUTRITION KNOWLEDGE AND DEVELOPMENT OF COMPLICATIONS IN TYPE 2 DIABETIC PATIENTS
Background and Aims: Diabetes is increasing rapidly in Turkey as most countries in the world. The prevention of complications which is the main aim in the treatment of diabetes can be accomplished partly with nutrition education. The aim of this study was to assess the relationship between nutrition knowledge (NK) and complications in patients with type 2 diabetes. Materials and Methods: 280 patients with 8-20 years of diabetes duration who applied to diet outpatient clinic were recruited. The questionnaire was prepared by the investigators to assess the NK. A score was calculated on the scale of 100. The complications were determined based on hospital records and patients’ self- report. Results: 63.2% of participants were female and 36.8% were male. The most common complications in participants were retinopathy (56.1%) and neuropathy (42.9%). The mean NK score was 80.2±11.7. At least one complication was seen in 85.0% of the participants. There was no significant difference for having any complication in patients with adequate and inadequate NK. However the risk of diabetic foot, and coronary artery disease was significantly higher in women with inadequate NK. Conclusion: NK is quite high in long term diabetic patients. However no effect of the NK on the development of complications could be shown. The difference of effect between men and women could be due to the fact that food is mostly prepared by women thus not much chance of the knowledge of men to be reflected on his eating habits. The knowledge difference among female patients was seen in the results as; in women with inadequate NK, the prevalence of diabetic foot and CAD was significantly higher.