Weight gain prevention among Black women in the rural community health center setting: The Shape Program

Duke Obesity Prevention Program, Duke Global Health Institute, 2812 Erwin Road, Suite 403 Box 90392, Durham, NC 27705, USA.
BMC Public Health (Impact Factor: 2.26). 04/2012; 12(1):305. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-12-305
Source: PubMed


Nearly 60% of black women are obese. Despite their increased risk of obesity and associated chronic diseases, black women have been underrepresented in clinical trials of weight loss interventions, particularly those conducted in the primary care setting. Further, existing obesity treatments are less effective for this population. The promotion of weight maintenance can be achieved at lower treatment intensity than can weight loss and holds promise in reducing obesity-associated chronic disease risk. Weight gain prevention may also be more consistent with the obesity-related sociocultural perspectives of black women than are traditional weight loss approaches.
We conducted an 18-month randomized controlled trial (the Shape Program) of a weight gain prevention intervention for overweight black female patients in the primary care setting. Participants include 194 premenopausal black women aged 25 to 44 years with a BMI of 25-34.9 kg/m2. Participants were randomized either to usual care or to a 12-month intervention that consisted of: tailored obesogenic behavior change goals, self-monitoring via interactive voice response phone calls, tailored skills training materials, 12 counseling calls with a registered dietitian and a 12-month YMCA membership.Participants are followed over 18 months, with study visits at baseline, 6-, 12- and 18-months. Anthropometric data, blood pressure, fasting lipids, fasting glucose, and self-administered surveys are collected at each visit. Accelerometer data is collected at baseline and 12-months.At baseline, participants were an average of 35.4 years old with a mean body mass index of 30.2 kg/m2. Participants were mostly employed and low-income. Almost half of the sample reported a diagnosis of hypertension or prehypertension and 12% reported a diagnosis of diabetes or prediabetes. Almost one-third of participants smoked and over 20% scored above the clinical threshold for depression.
The Shape Program utilizes an innovative intervention approach to lower the risk of obesity and obesity-associated chronic disease among black women in the primary care setting. The intervention was informed by behavior change theory and aims to prevent weight gain using inexpensive mobile technologies and existing health center resources. Baseline characteristics reflect a socioeconomically disadvantaged, high-risk population sample in need of evidence-based treatment strategies.
The trial is registered with clinicaltrials.gov NCT00938535.

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    • "The use of such technologies can allow for dissemination of information to large and varied populations. Innovative mobile intervention approaches used in health promotion include interactive voice response phone calls, use of cell phone applications (apps) and tailored Web-based interventions [1,2]. With the widespread adoption and rapid advancement in the capacities of smartphones (mobile phones with an operating system capable of running applications), more technically advanced interventions, including multiple modes of interactivity and opportunities for engagement with consumers, patients, and beneficiaries of health programs, are now possible [3-5]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Mobile phone technologies for health promotion and disease prevention have evolved rapidly, but few studies have tested the efficacy of mobile health in full-fledged programs. Text4baby is an example of mobile health based on behavioral theory, and it delivers text messages to traditionally underserved pregnant women and new mothers to change their health, health care beliefs, practices, and behaviors in order to improve clinical outcomes. The purpose of this pilot evaluation study is to assess the efficacy of this text messaging campaign. Methods We conducted a randomized pilot evaluation study. All participants were pregnant women first presenting for care at the Fairfax County, Virginia Health Department. We randomized participants to enroll in text4baby and receive usual health care (intervention), or continue simply to receive usual care (control). We then conducted a 24-item survey by telephone of attitudes and behaviors related to text4baby. We surveyed participants at baseline, before text4baby was delivered to the intervention group, and at follow-up at approximately 28 weeks of baby’s gestational age. Results We completed 123 baseline interviews in English and in Spanish. Overall, the sample was predominantly of Hispanic origin (79.7%) with an average age of 27.6 years. We completed 90 follow-up interviews, and achieved a 73% retention rate. We used a logistic generalized estimating equation model to evaluate intervention effects on measured outcomes. We found a significant effect of text4baby intervention exposure on increased agreement with the attitude statement “I am prepared to be a new mother” (OR = 2.73, CI = 1.04, 7.18, p = 0.042) between baseline and follow-up. For those who had attained a high school education or greater, we observed a significantly higher overall agreement to attitudes against alcohol consumption during pregnancy (OR = 2.80, CI = 1.13, 6.90, p = 0.026). We also observed a significant improvement of attitudes toward alcohol consumption from baseline to follow-up (OR = 3.57, CI = 1.13 – 11.24, p = 0.029). Conclusions This pilot study is the first randomized evaluation of text4baby. It is a promising program in that exposure to the text messages was associated with changes in specific beliefs targeted by the messages.
    BMC Public Health 11/2012; 12(1):1031. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-12-1031 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    Journal of midwifery & women's health 05/2013; 58(3). DOI:10.1111/jmwh.12051 · 1.07 Impact Factor
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