A Community-Based Program To Lower Diabetes and Cardiovasular Risk Factors In Latino Women

Saturday, 16 November 2013: 3:15 PM

Sara A. Baldwin, PhD, RN, APHN-BC
College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Texas A & M University Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi, TX

Learning Objective 1: 1. Participants will be able to identify integrated community-based strategies addressing a lifestyle program for Latino women in an urban Texas Coastal Bend community.

Learning Objective 2: 2. Participants will be able to evaluate key cardio-vascular and diabetes risk factors for the targeted population.

Background: Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is becoming more prevalent among female Latino populations. Lifestyle modifications to lose weight and increase physical activity have been shown in national studies to reduce the development of T2D by 58%. Increasing cardiovascular health can further decrease the risk of being diagnosed with T2D by 32%. No outcomes-based program exists for Latino women diagnosed as high-risk for developing T2D living in a South Texas urban setting (> 300,000). A 12-week community-based lifestyle program was pilot tested and implemented with 2 cohorts of women. Purpose/Aim:  To report findings on diabetes and cardiovascular risk factors and wellness health behaviors following a community-based multi-level lifestyle program with Latino women identified as high risk for developing T2D. Methods:  A pre-and post-test study design was used to assess HgA1C, blood pressure, BMI, waist- to-hip ratio, Hettler’s six dimensions of wellness health behaviors (social, occupational, intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual), and average daily walking steps. The program consisted of motivational interviewing and counseling, physical activity classes and lifestyle modification classes based on each woman’s Hettler health behavior inventory results. Results: Fifty-nine women with a mean age of 58 years completed the 12-week program. Paired t-tests revealed that women (at the end of 3 months) showed significant reductions in diabetes and cardiovascular total risk scores. The performance of health behaviors significantly increased during the program. Women on average walked 7,000 steps per day, suggesting a “moderately active” population. Implications: The short-term effects are promising at 3 months post-test measurement.  However this time period is likely not enough time to maintain behaviors on a long-term basis. Six and twelve month measures are recommended in future studies. Social support and empowerment through physical activity were identified and recommended as additional strategies to use with this targeted population.