Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

African-Americans Lose Weight In 12-week, Church-based Program

Date:
March 10, 2009
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
Nearly half of overweight and obese African Americans who completed a 12-week, faith-based program Fit Body and Soul in Georgia lost 5 percent or more of their body weight. Most of the participants kept the weight off for at least six months.

Nearly half of overweight and obese African Americans who completed a 12-week, faith-based program lost 5 percent or more of their body weight and most kept it off for at least six months, researchers reported at the American Heart Association’s 49th Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention.

Related Articles


The pilot program was conducted by trained lay leaders at Gospel Water Branch Baptist Church near Augusta, Ga. Researchers were able to collect full data on 35 (nearly 88 percent) of the 40 obese men and women who completed the initial 12 weekly sessions of the Fit Body and Soul (FBS) program. The participants were average age 46 and had an average body mass index (BMI) of 36.

After 12 weeks, almost 46 percent (16/35) of participants had lost 5 percent or more of their starting weight. About 26 percent (nine) lost 7 percent or more.

The program included six monthly “booster” sessions for six months after the 12 weekly behavioral health intervention sessions. At the study’s end, 11 of the 16 subjects (nearly 69 percent) with initial weight-loss success had kept the weight off through the entire nine months.

“This kind of result is remarkable in a faith-based program run by lay leaders when so many other community-based programs have failed,” said Sunita Dodani, M.D., Ph.D., M.Sc., FAHA, principal investigator, director, Center for Outcome Research and Education (CORE) and associate professor, Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, Kansas University Medical Center in Kansas City, Kansas.

While similar programs have concentrated on diet and lifestyle changes for weight reduction alone, the FBS program focuses on weight loss and behavioral changes to prevent future diabetes in high-risk church members and relies on lay leaders to administer the program.

The church pastor, the Rev. Robert Ramsey, chose four lay leaders who had two days of training to present the 12 health modules of Fit Body and Soul, a faith-based diabetes prevention program. The lay leaders either had a medical background, such as being a registered nurse, or had been active in the church’s health ministry.

The modules were adapted from the National Institutes of Health (NIH)-sponsored Diabetes Prevention Program. The NIH recently approved a $3.7 million grant for five years to scale up the FBS study in a controlled comparison of 20 churches in the Midwest. Ten congregations will run the FBS program and 10 controls will conduct a different community-based health promotion program developed from the Centers for Disease Control Community Guide.

Attrition was fairly high in the small pilot study, so the results need confirmation in the larger, controlled investigation, Dodani said. Of the 35 people who finished the 12 weekly sessions, 21 completed the nine-month program.

Participants in the FBS who lost a modest amount of body weight by changing their diet and exercising may be less likely to develop diabetes.

Diabetes is a major risk factor for heart disease. Being overweight (BMI of 26–29.9) or obese (BMI of 30–39.9) increases the risk of diabetes.

“We developed this study because African Americans are known to be at increased risk of both diabetes and obesity and also because studies have shown that, compared to whites, African Americans are less likely to benefit from general community weight-loss programs,” Dodani said.

While the feasibility study only tracked weight loss and was limited to men and women who were overweight or obese, the scaled up investigation will be open to people of normal weight who have pre-diabetic elevations in their blood sugar and people with a strong family history of diabetes, Dodani said.

Co-authors are: Andrea Kriska, Ph.D. and Venkat K. Narayan, M.D., Ph.D. Individual author disclosures are available on the abstract.

The study was funded by the Association of Professional Teachers and Research of Washington, D.C., and the College of Preventive Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Heart Association. "African-Americans Lose Weight In 12-week, Church-based Program." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310152325.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2009, March 10). African-Americans Lose Weight In 12-week, Church-based Program. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310152325.htm
American Heart Association. "African-Americans Lose Weight In 12-week, Church-based Program." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310152325.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Yoga can help your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and heart just as much as biking and walking does, a new study suggests. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins