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Diabetes Educ. 2010 May-Jun;36(3):465-72. doi: 10.1177/0145721710366756.

Implementation of the fit body and soul, a church-based life style program for diabetes prevention in high-risk African Americans: a feasibility study.

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The Center for Outcome Research and Education, School of Medicine, Kansas University Medical Center, Kansas City, KS (Dr Dodani)
CATX Inc, Gladwyne, PA (Dr Fields)



The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of a behavioral faith-based diabetes prevention program called the Fit Body and Soul program in a semi-urban African-American church using a community-based participatory approach.


The 12-session Fit Body and Soul program was modified from the group lifestyle balance intervention that was modified from the successful National Institute of Health (NIH) funded Diabetes Prevention Program. The Fit Body and Soul program was implemented in a semi-urban African-American church community. Based on the results of physical examinations and increased body mass index (BMI > or = 25), 40 adult members of the church were identified as being at high risk for diabetes. Four church ministers, after receiving Fit Body and Soul program training for 2 days, served as study interventionists. The primary objective was weight loss of at least 5% by the end of the 12-session Fit Body and Soul intervention.


Screening of church participants was conducted at the Gospel Water Branch Baptist Church in Augusta, Georgia. A total of 40 individuals having a BMI > or = 25 were selected. Of the 40, a total of 35 (87.5%) attended at least 10 sessions and provided information required for the study. Of the 35, a total of 48% lost at least 5% of baseline weight, 26% lost 7% or more, and 14% lost >10% of baseline weight.


This pilot trial suggests that carrying out a larger Fit Body and Soul study in a faith-based setting, using behavioral lifestyle interventions, in the context of a diabetes prevention program for African American communities is feasible, as is the possibility that subjects in that larger study will achieve a clinically significant degree of weight loss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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