Faith-based culturally-tailored diabetes prevention program for African Americans
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Background: The prevalence of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in the United States (U.S.) continue to increase. African Americans (AAs) are disproportionately affected by T2DM, thus delivery of diabetes prevention programs (DPP) in a church setting is an effective way to disseminate health information and/or encouraging AAs to adopt healthy lifestyles. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an 8-week culturally-tailored DPP in mitigating the risks for the development of T2DM (also called “diabetes”) in a sample of AA church members through the implementation of the “Power to Prevent” DPP. The DPP was scripturally based and delivered in a church setting. The Diabetes Risk Test (DRT) was used to screen for eligible participants, with a score of five or greater indicating one’s risk for the development of T2DM. Methods: Baseline, and 8-week outcomes measures assessed: (a) knowledge of diabetes prevention strategies, (b) nutrition knowledge, (c) physical activity level, (d) body mass index (BMI) and, (d) weight loss of 5% to 7% of baseline bodyweight. Findings: Seventeen participants (56.6%) completed the study. The mean DRT score was 5.52. Knowledge of diabetes prevention strategies (p = 0.040), and healthy nutrition (p = 0.000) were significant. Physical activity (p = 0.188), and BMI (p = 0.109) did not improve significantly. Mean percentage weight reduction was 1.69%. Conclusion: Ongoing implementation of DPPs which target AAs in real-world settings such as their places of worship are needed to stem the tide of the diabetes epidemic in the U.S.