The roles of race/ethnicity and geographical region in the context of first-year college weight gain remain largely under-examined. The present study evaluated whether race/ethnicity: (1) at baseline was associated with greater representation in cardiometabolic health risk categories for body mass index, percent body fat, waist circumference, and waist-to-hip ratio in the full sample of 54 Black/African American and 80 White/European American first-year female undergraduates attending a North Carolina state university; and (2) moderated body composition changes between the beginning of the fall and spring semesters among the 83 participants who completed baseline and follow-up visits (N = 39 Black/African Americans). More Black/African Americans than White/European Americans had percent body fat values ≥32% at baseline; a greater proportion of White/European Americans than Black/African Americans had a waist-to-hip ratio >0.80. Among those who completed baseline and follow-up visits, White/European Americans had higher waist-to-hip ratios (unadjusted: p <0.01, adjusted for family income: p < 0.01) and waist circumferences (adjusted for family income: p < 0.05) at both time points. No strong moderating effects of race/ethnicity were detected. Preliminary results suggested that greater consideration of racial/ethnic indicators and potential regional variation in these biometric attributes among first-year college students is warranted.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present pilot investigation explored whether BMI status at college entry moderated changes in body composition and eating behavior in a sample of 134 first-time, first-year undergraduate females (40% Black/African American). Participants had their body measurements [i.e. weight, BMI, hip and waist circumference (WC), percent body fat (PBF)] assessed and completed self-report measures of binge eating, night eating, and intuitive eating at both the beginning of the fall and the beginning of the spring semesters of their first year. Results for the 83 completers revealed that overweight/obese students (N=28) experienced greater gains in weight (p<0.05), BMI (p<0.05), and a trend towards increased WCs (p<0.06) across the first college semester relative to their underweight/normal weight peers (N=55). Night eating increased (p<0.05) and intuitive eating declined (p<0.05) over time in the full sample. Overweight/obese participants indexed greater binge eating scores (p<0.001) and lower intuitive eating scores (p<0.01) irrespective of time. Most anthropometric findings were diminished while all eating behavior estimates were retained in subsequent models adjusted for parental income. Preliminary results call attention to the need for continued elucidation of the roles of socioeconomic and regional diversity in affecting both the prevalence of overweight/obesity and the relationship between higher weight and body composition changes among first-year college women. Findings also provide tentative behavioral targets for college wellness programming that may prove useful in promoting healthy weight management while acclimating to the college environment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although negative racial stereotypes may affect the mental and physical health of African Americans, little research has examined the influence of positive or complimentary racial stereotypes on such outcomes. More specifically, this study explored the relationship between African American women's endorsement of complimentary stereotypes about their sexuality and attitudes/behaviors that have been associated with sexual risk. Data were gathered from 206 African American women as part of the Black Women in the Study of Epidemics project. Multivariate regression models were used to examine associations between women's endorsement of complimentary stereotypes about their sexuality and selected sex-related attitudes and behaviors. Participants' endorsement of complimentary sexual stereotypes was significantly positively associated with beliefs that having sex without protection would strengthen their relationship (B = .28, SE = .10, p < .01) and that they could use drugs and always make healthy choices about using protection (B = .31, SE = .09, p < .01). Significant positive associations were also found between complimentary sexual stereotypes and the number of casual sexual partners women reported in the past year (B = .29, SE = .15, p = .05) as well as their willingness to have sex in exchange for money or drugs during that time (B = .78, OR = 2.18, p < .05). These findings suggest that endorsement of complimentary sexual stereotypes by African American women can lead to increased risk behavior, particularly relating to possible infection with HIV or other sexually transmitted infections.
Women & Health 02/2013; 53(1):1-19. DOI:10.1080/03630242.2012.750260 · 1.05 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present investigation examined P3 event-related electroencephalographic potentials and a short and selected list of addiction-related candidate gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within 84 female students, aged 18-20 yrs. The students were assigned to groups defined by the presence versus absence of a positive body mass index (BMI) change from the pre-college physical exam to the current day. Analyses revealed significantly greater P3 latencies and reduced P3 amplitudes during a response inhibition task among students who exhibited a BMI gain. BMI gain was also significantly associated with a ANKK1 SNP previously implicated in substance dependence risk. In logistic regression analyses, P3 latencies at the frontal electrode and this ANKK1 genotype correctly classified 71.1% of the students into the BMI groups. The present findings suggest that heritable indicators of impaired response inhibition can differentiate students who may be on a path toward an overweight or obese body mass.
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