The resource model of self-control posits that self-control is a finite resource that can be depleted. Individuals with diabetes must continually restrict their diet, requiring self-control. As a result, dietary adherence is difficult, and lapses are common. People with diabetes who overexert self-control following a lapse may be especially likely to experience a subsequent relapse, as suggested by the resource model. This investigation used the resource model of self-control to test whether overexertion of dietary self-control following a lapse would be predictive of a subsequent relapse in dietary control.Design
We tested this prediction in a daily diary study of 128 individuals with diabetes (Mage = 66.12).Methods
Participants' reports of their daily dietary adherence were used to define lapses in adherence, post-lapse adherence, and relapses.Results
Individuals who overexerted self-control after a lapse were more likely to experience a subsequent relapse (OR = 3.276, p = .016) and to do so sooner (HR = 2.12, p = .023).Conclusions
People with diabetes may seek to compensate for a lapse in adherence by overexerting self-control, but doing so may deplete their self-control and increase the risk of a future relapse.Statement of contribution
What is already known on this subject?Statement of contribution
What does this study add?