Constraints, Resourcefulness, and Resilience in the Immigrant Latinx Community: Alternative Health Promotion Strategies for Type 2 Diabetes Self-Management
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This preliminary investigation explores how socioeconomically vulnerable Latinx immigrants self-manage their Type 2 diabetes symptoms in a large urban city in the Southwest United States. Currently, the existing health disparities literature relating to this topic highlights how marginalized Latinx individuals fall short of Western biomedical standards for optimal diabetes self-management (Ortega, Rodriguez, and Vargas Bustamante 2015). This work emphasizes diabetes treatment centered on receiving care from a licensed medical professional. Largely absent in existing scholarship is a more holistic evaluation capturing how Latinx persons facing multiple dimensions of social constraints may draw upon their rich heritage, indigenous roots, and traditional remedies to supplement a Western biomedical regimen (Gomez-Beloz and Chavez 2001). For this pilot study, I conducted semi-structured qualitative interviews with six diabetic Latinas to discuss the culturally-informed, alternative health promotion strategies they engage in to circumvent constraints to modern healthcare. Utilizing intersectionality as the overarching theoretical framework (Collins 2000) in addition to tenants of grounded theory, this preliminary study aims to provide a more nuanced outlook on immigrant Latinx health behaviors as they relate to diabetes care.