Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 569-580

First online:

Time perspective and weight management behaviors in newly diagnosed Type 2 diabetes: a mediational analysis

  • Peter A. HallAffiliated withFaculty of Applied Health Sciences, University of Waterloo Email author 
  • , Geoffrey T. FongAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Waterloo
  • , Alice Y. ChengAffiliated withUniversity of Toronto

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The primary objective of the current study was to examine the extent to which domain-specific time perspective predicts weight management behaviors (dietary behavior and physical activity) among those newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. A secondary objective was to test potential mediators of the hypothesized effect (behavioral intention, self-efficacy and control beliefs). A total of 204 adults newly diagnosed (≤6 months) with Type 2 diabetes participated in the study, which included a baseline assessment of domain-general and domain-specific time perspective, as well as strength of intention to perform two weight-management behaviors (dietary choice and physical activity); both weight-management behaviors were assessed again at 6 month follow-up. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed a prospective association between domain-specific time perspective and uptake of weight management behaviors. Individuals with newly diagnosed T2DM possessing a future-oriented time perspective reported making less frequent fatty food choices and greater increases in physical activity over the 6-month follow-up interval. These effects were selectively mediated by intention strength, and not competing social cognitive variables. For both behaviors, the total effects and meditational models were robust to adjustments for demographics, body composition and disease variables. A future-oriented time perspective is prospectively associated with superior uptake of weight management behaviors among those with newly diagnosed Type 2 diabetes. The facilitating effect of future-oriented thinking appears to occur via enhanced strength of intentions to perform weight management behaviors.


Diabetes Health behavior Weight management Time perspective Behavior change