A randomized trial of a diet and exercise intervention for overweight and obese women from economically disadvantaged neighborhoods: Sisters Taking Action for Real Success (STARS)

Sara Wilcox, Patricia A. Sharpe, Deborah Parra-Medina, Michelle Granner, Brent Hutto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Lower socioeconomic status at both the individual and neighborhood level is associated with increased health risks. Weight loss can reduce this risk, but few high quality weight-loss studies target this population. Objectives: STARS tests a culturally appropriate, group-based behavioral and social support intervention on body weight and waist circumference in women from financially disadvantaged neighborhoods. Design: A stratified (by BMI) randomized trial. Randomization to group was generated by a random numbers table with allocation concealment by opaque envelopes. Methods: Participants 25-50years who had a BMI≥25kg/m 2 and a waist circumference≥88cm were recruited from 18 census tracts in Columbia, SC with high rates of poverty between November 2008 and November 2010. All participants received a dietary and exercise counseling session. Intervention participants then receive 16 theoretically-based and tailored weekly group sessions followed by 8weeks of telephone maintenance counseling. Control participants receive 16 weekly health education mailings. Measurements correspond to baseline, post-group intervention, and post-telephone counseling, and for intervention participants, after a 12-week no-contact period. Measurement staff was blinded to group assignment. Results: Participants (N=155; n=80 intervention, n=75 minimal intervention control) were primarily African American (86.5%) and averaged 38.9years with a mean BMI of 40.1kg/m 2 and waist circumference of 115.4cm. Food insecurity was reported by 43% of participants. Summary: STARS targets an underserved population with an innovative, tailored, and theoretically-grounded, group-based intervention followed by telephone maintenance. If effective, the approach has the potential to be feasible and cost-effective for community delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)931-945
Number of pages15
JournalContemporary Clinical Trials
Volume32
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011

Keywords

  • African American
  • Diet
  • Exercise
  • Health disparities
  • Physical activity
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)

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