Unsupportive social interactions are associated with poorer self-reported health in israeli patients with diabetes

Anthony D. Heymann, Giora Kaplan, Nurit Freidman, Orna Baron-Epel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Social support is associated with improved adherence to treatment recommendations among patients with diabetes. This research examines negative dimensions of social support such as interference and insensitivity which may interfere with appropriate lifestyle choices. Methods: A telephone survey in Israel of 764 patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes was conducted to assess social support and unsupportive social interactions, and correlate them with self-reported current health status. Results: Patients with higher levels of interference reported poorer health after adjusting for other factors including positive social support. Interference, which is a negative dimension of social support, was higher among Arabs than Jews (OR=2.12; 95% CI: 1.44, 3.10) after adjusting for factors, including positive social support, in a logistic regression model. Among Jews, the less educated, those not performing physical activity, and those with lower levels of social support reported significantly higher levels of interference. Insensitivity was lower among Arabs compared to Jews (OR=0.64, 95%CI: 0.44, 0.94) after adjusting for the variables in the regression model. Conclusions: Unsupportive social interactions can hamper adoption of a lifestyle needed for diabetes management, negatively influencing self-reported health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)645-651
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Behavior
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2016

Bibliographical note

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  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Negative social interactions
  • Patient adherence
  • Psychology
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Social Psychology


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