Perceived Stress, Behavior, and Body Mass Index Among Adults Participating in a Worksite Obesity Prevention Program, Seattle, 2005–2007

Department of Epidemiology, University of Washington, Box 357236, Seattle, WA 98195-7236. E-mail: .
Preventing chronic disease (Impact Factor: 2.12). 10/2012; 9(10):E152. DOI: 10.5888/pcd9.120001
Source: PubMed


Stress in numerous contexts may affect the risk for obesity through biobehavioral processes. Acute stress has been associated with diet and physical activity in some studies; the relationship between everyday stress and such behavior is not clear. The objective of this study was to examine associations between perceived stress, dietary behavior, physical activity, eating awareness, self-efficacy, and body mass index (BMI) among healthy working adults. Secondary objectives were to explore whether eating awareness modified the relationship between perceived stress and dietary behavior and perceived stress and BMI.
Promoting Activity and Changes in Eating (PACE) was a group-randomized worksite intervention to prevent weight gain in the Seattle metropolitan area from 2005 through 2007. A subset of 621 participants at 33 worksites provided complete information on perceived stress at baseline. Linear mixed models evaluated cross-sectional associations.
The mean (standard deviation [SD]) Perceived Stress Scale-10 score among all participants was 12.7 (6.4), and the mean (SD) BMI was 29.2 kg/m(2 )(6.3 kg/m(2)). Higher levels of perceived stress were associated with lower levels of eating awareness, physical activity, and walking. Among participants who had low levels of eating awareness, higher levels of perceived stress were associated with fewer servings of fruit and vegetables and greater consumption of fast food meals.
Dietary and physical activity behaviors of workers may be associated with average levels of perceived stress. Longitudinal studies are needed, however, to support inclusion of stress management or mindfulness techniques in workplace obesity prevention efforts.

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    • "The lack of association of perceived stress during the past month with obesity is also consistent with the literature. Barrington et al. [14], in a sample of predominantly non-Hispanic white adults, showed no association of perceived stress with BMI, but significant correlation with lifestyle behaviors, which supports our hypotheses that prolonged exposure to stressors may be necessary for the effects of stress to manifest as obesity. In our study, women reported more chronic stressors and greater perceived stress than men, but we did not observe an interaction with sex in relation to adiposity as other studies have reported [5] [6]. "
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    ABSTRACT: To examine the association of psychosocial stress with obesity, adiposity, and dietary intake in a diverse sample of Hispanic/Latino adults.Methods Participants were 5077 men and women, 18-74 years old, from diverse Hispanic/Latino ethnic backgrounds. Linear regression models were used to assess the association of ongoing chronic stressors and recent perceived stress with measures of adiposity (waist circumference and percentage body fat) and dietary intake (total energy, saturated fat, alternative healthy eating index [AHEI-2010]). Multinomial logistic models were used to describe the odds of obesity or overweight relative to normal weight.ResultsGreater number of chronic stressors and greater perceived stress were associated with higher total energy intake. Greater recent perceived stress was associated with lower diet quality as indicated by AHEI-2010 scores. Compared to no stressors, reporting ≥ 3 chronic stressors was associated with higher odds of being obese (OR = 1.5, 95%CI 1.01-2.1), greater waist circumference (β = 3.3, 95%CI 1.0-5.5) and percentage body fat (β = 1.5, 95%CI 0.4, 2.6).Conclusions The study found an association between stress and obesity and adiposity measures, suggesting that stress management techniques may be useful in obesity prevention and treatment programs that target Hispanic/Latino populations.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · Annals of Epidemiology
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    • "It has been hypothesized that a (worksite) mindfulness training is an effective strategy to improve lifestyle behaviors and prevent overweight and obesity [16,17]. According to Chatzisarantis & Hagger [17], the working mechanism of mindfulness for lifestyle behaviors is to positively moderate the intention-behavior relationship [17]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Overweight and obesity are associated with an increased risk of morbidity. Mindfulness training could be an effective strategy to optimize lifestyle behaviors related to body weight gain. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a worksite mindfulness-based multi-component intervention on vigorous physical activity in leisure time, sedentary behavior at work, fruit intake and determinants of these behaviors. The control group received information on existing lifestyle behavior- related facilities that were already available at the worksite. In a randomized controlled trial design (n = 257), 129 workers received a mindfulness training, followed by e-coaching, lunch walking routes and fruit. Outcome measures were assessed at baseline and after 6 and 12 months using questionnaires. Physical activity was also measured using accelerometers. Effects were analyzed using linear mixed effect models according to the intention-to-treat principle. Linear regression models (complete case analyses) were used as sensitivity analyses. There were no significant differences in lifestyle behaviors and determinants of these behaviors between the intervention and control group after 6 or 12 months. The sensitivity analyses showed effect modification for gender in sedentary behavior at work at 6-month follow-up, although the main analyses did not. This study did not show an effect of a worksite mindfulness-based multi-component intervention on lifestyle behaviors and behavioral determinants after 6 and 12 months. The effectiveness of a worksite mindfulness-based multi-component intervention as a health promotion intervention for all workers could not be established.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2014 · International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization and the World Economic Forum have recommended further research to strengthen current knowledge of workplace health programmes, particularly on effectiveness and using simple instruments. A pedometer is one such simple instrument that can be incorporated in workplace interventions. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness of pedometer interventions in the workplace for increasing physical activity and improving subsequent health outcomes. SEARCH METHODS: Electronic searches of the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (671 potential papers), MEDLINE (1001), Embase (965), CINAHL (1262), OSH UPDATE databases (75) and Web of Science (1154) from the earliest record to between 30th January and 6th February 2012 yielded 3248 unique records. Reference lists of articles yielded an additional 34 papers. Contact with individuals and organisations did not produce any further records. SELECTION CRITERIA: We included individual and cluster-randomised controlled trials of workplace health promotion interventions with a pedometer component in employed adults. The primary outcome was physical activity and was part of the eligibility criteria. We considered subsequent health outcomes, including adverse effects, as secondary outcomes. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two review authors undertook the screening of titles and abstracts and the full-text papers independently. Two review authors (RFP and MC) independently completed data extraction and risk of bias assessment. We contacted authors to obtain additional data and clarification. MAIN RESULTS: We found four relevant studies providing data for 1809 employees, 60% of whom were allocated to the intervention group. All studies assessed outcomes immediately after the intervention had finished and the intervention duration varied between three to six months. All studies had usual treatment control conditions; however one study's usual treatment was an alternative physical activity programme while the other three had minimally active controls. In general, there was high risk of bias mainly due to lack of blinding, self reported outcome measurement, incomplete outcome data due to attrition, and most of the studies had not published protocols, which increases the likelihood of selective reporting.Three studies compared the pedometer programme to a minimally active control group, but the results for physical activity could not be combined because each study used a different measure of activity. One study observed an increase in physical activity under a pedometer programme, but the other two did not find a significant difference. For secondary outcomes we found improvements in body mass index, waist circumference, fasting plasma glucose, the quality of life mental component and worksite injury associated with the pedometer programmes, but these results were based on limited data from one or two small studies. There were no differences between the pedometer programme and the control group for blood pressure, a number of biochemical outcomes and the quality of life physical component. Sedentary behaviour and disease risk scores were not measured by any of the included studies.One study compared a pedometer programme and an alternative physical activity programme, but baseline imbalances made it difficult to distinguish the true improvements associated with either programme.Overall, there was insufficient evidence to assess the effectiveness of pedometer interventions in the workplace.There is a need for more high quality randomised controlled trials to assess the effectiveness of pedometer interventions in the workplace for increasing physical activity and improving subsequent health outcomes. To improve the quality of the evidence available, future studies should be registered in an online trials register, publish a protocol, allocate time and financial support to reducing attrition, and try to blind personnel (especially those who undertake measurement). To better identify the effects of pedometer interventions, future studies should report a core set of outcomes (total physical activity in METs, total time sitting in hours and minutes, objectively measured cardiovascular disease and type II diabetes risk factors, quality of life and injury), assess outcomes in the long term and undertake subgroup analyses based upon demographic subgroups (e.g. age, gender, educational status). Future studies should also compare different types of active intervention to test specific intervention components (eligibility, duration, step goal, step diary, settings), and settings (occupation, intervention provider). AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: There was limited and low quality data providing insufficient evidence to assess the effectiveness of pedometer interventions in the workplace for increasing physical activity and improving subsequent health outcomes.
    No preview · Article · May 2013 · Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online)
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