This study assessed psychosocial correlates of dyslipidemia, towards enabling improved tertiary prevention of macrovascular complications of diabetes mellitus (DM). We tested the hypothesis that psychosocial measures are related to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) and triglyceride concentrations in a rural aboriginal population in British Columbia, Canada. Persons sampled were on-reserve registered Indians (n=198) with and at risk for Type 2 DM. Relationships between HDL-C and psychosocial variables were associated with glycemic status. For persons with diabetes and impaired glucose tolerance (n=44), quality of life and mastery were positively related (P<0.001), and depression inversely related (P<0.001), to HDL-C. An apparent lack of effect of behavior suggests the influence of emotional pathways involving autonomic-neuroendocrine axes. We recommend assessing mental health, and promoting mastery and diabetes quality of life through empowerment oriented diabetes management strategies, in negotiating culturally acceptable treatment of diabetic dyslipidemia for aboriginal people.