Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Program taught in American Sign Language helps deaf achieve healthier weight

Date:
March 19, 2014
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
Deaf adults successfully lost weight in a program using American Sign Language. The study is the first randomized trial of a weight-reduction and lifestyle-change program in deaf ASL users.

A group of deaf adults using American Sign Language in a healthy lifestyle program successfully lost weight, according to a study presented Wednesday.

In the first randomized trial of lifestyle modification or weight reduction with deaf people using American Sign Language, participants had moderate improvements in their weight and level of physical activity after a 16-week program.

"Existing mainstream programs focused on weight and weight-related behaviors are often inaccessible to the deaf community,'' said Steven Barnett, M.D., lead author of the study and associate professor of family medicine and public health sciences at the University of Rochester in New York. "Collaboration with deaf ASL users is essential to develop accessible and culturally appropriate programs."

In partnership with the deaf community in Rochester, the researchers adapted a healthy lifestyle program shown to be effective in hearing people.

A previous study, using accessible public health surveillance in Rochester, found that obesity (body mass index or BMI > 30) is more prevalent in the local deaf community than in the general population -- slightly more than 34 percent of the deaf people were obese, compared to nearly 27 percent in the general population.

In the Deaf Weight Wise trial, 104 overweight or obese participants were either enrolled in the healthy lifestyle program, with weekly 2-hour group sessions, or assigned to a delayed group who would receive the intervention later.

For the group sessions, counselors used motivational interviewing techniques to encourage lifestyle change and help participants develop strategies to maintain healthy eating, such as in social situations and during stress. They were encouraged to exercise at least 150 minutes per week.

After six months, participants in the intervention group had lost 7.4 pounds more and reduced their BMI 1.35 points more than the delayed group. Most of the intervention group's participants (58.3 percent) lost at least 5 percent of their baseline weight, compared with 14.3 percent of the delayed group.

Researchers will continue to follow participants for 24 months.

"During program development and during the trial, deaf community members emphasized the importance of having deaf counselors," said Barnett, who directs the Rochester Prevention Research Center: National Center for Deaf Health Research. "I realize this is not possible to implement everywhere at present. We are working on program adaptations to address access to counselors who are deaf ASL users."

Lori DeWindt, M.A., a member of the Deaf Weight Wise Study Group and a Deaf Weight Wise counselor, said, "Participants were comfortable in the culturally affirming environment in which everyone signs. This setting, along with accessible information and peer support, contributed to the positive experience of participants."

Co-authors are Erika Sutter, M.P.H., Thomas Pearson, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., and members of the Deaf Weight Wise Study Group. Disclosures are listed on the abstract.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Research Centers Program funded the study. It was presented at the American Heart Association's Epidemiology & Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity & Metabolism Scientific Sessions 2014.


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. "Program taught in American Sign Language helps deaf achieve healthier weight." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319165204.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2014, March 19). Program taught in American Sign Language helps deaf achieve healthier weight. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319165204.htm
American Heart Association. "Program taught in American Sign Language helps deaf achieve healthier weight." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140319165204.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) New research shows that women who suffer from PTSD are three times more likely to develop a food addiction. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. 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:
from the past week

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