Intervention Prevents Weight Gain Among Black Women
An intervention not focused on weight loss was effective for weight gain prevention among socioeconomically disadvantaged black women, according to a report published by JAMA Internal Medicine.
Promoting clinically meaningful weight loss among black women has been a challenge. Compared with white women, “black women have higher rates of body weight satisfaction, fewer social pressures to lose weight, and sociocultural norms that tolerate heavier body weights,” according to the study background.
“New weight management strategies are necessary for this population,” according to the study by Gary G. Bennett, PhD, of Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, and colleagues.
Researchers compared changes in weight and cardiometabolic risk among black women assigned to either a behavioral weight gain prevention intervention or usual care in a clinical trial (the Shape Program). The intervention included weekly self-monitoring via interactive voice response telephone calls, monthly counseling calls, tailored skills training materials and a one-year gym membership.
Participants in the clinical trial were 194 overweight and class 1 obese (BMI of 25 to 34.9) premenopausal black women aged 25 to 44. Assessments were done at 12 and 18 months. At baseline, the women had an average age of 35.4, an average weight of almost 179 lbs (81.1 kg), and an average BMI of 30.2.
“We explicitly informed participants that Shape was not a weight loss trial. We did not expect participants to be motivated to lose weight. Instead, we informed participants that Shape was an approach designed to improve their overall well-being and to maintain their current body shape,” the study notes.
The 12-month weight change was larger among the intervention participants (average, -2.2 lbs [1 kg]) relative to usual care (average, 1.1 lbs [0.5 kg]). At 12 months, 62% of intervention participants were at or below their baseline weight compared with 45% of usual-care participants. By 18 months, intervention participants maintained significantly larger changes in weight (average difference, -3.7 lbs [-1.7 kg]), according to the study results.
No difference was seen between treatment groups in change in waist circumference, blood pressure, blood pressure control, glucose or lipid levels at any time point, the results also indicate.
‘It is clear that new treatment approaches, such as weight gain prevention, are necessary to contend with the considerable challenge of obesity in this population,” the study concludes.
Source: American Medical Association