Higher BMI signifies being overweight, and for children, it means they would become obese in the future. Increasing BMI among African American adults above 18 years is becoming a public health concern. Higher BMI among these adults is likely to result in obesity, a health condition that’s preventable in the United States. The United States is witnessing a dramatic increasing BMI and obesity among the younger African American adults. Although the obesity epidemic in the U.S cuts across all racial groups, it has a higher prevalence among African Americans owing to their increasing BMI. Being obese or overweightis a considerable risk factor for developing several co-morbid conditions (Friedenberg, Tang, Mendonc, &Vanar, 2011). For example, gaining weight by about twenty kilograms increases risks to diabetes, and a reduction of the same is likely to reduce the risk to zero chances.Moreover, increasing body weight has been linked to overall mortality and premature death among African Americans above 18 years.
Exercise and diet programs are effective interventions in reducing BMI among African Americans. Behavioral treatment intervention has been an effective approach to weight loss and has been practiced for more than 25 years (Zhou et al., 2018). Emerging evidence shows that physical activity and dietary control plays an important role in age-related disease prevention. Age-related diseases such as obesity and diabetes have been linked to lifestyle factors. Being overweight disproportionately impacts African Americans, this population being underrepresented weight loss studies.
From 1980 to 2004, obesity African Americans is estimated to have doubled from 15% to 33% (Friedenberg et al., 2011). The continuing trend also projected that 75% of African Americans would be obese or overweight by 2015.
Dodani and Fields conducted a study in 2010 to assess the impacts of a lifestyle modification program. The lifestyle modification program included diet and physical activity interventions to assess weight control and prevent diabetes. They used 40 participants from church, and the inclusion criteria included overweight, obese, and morbidly obsess. The study followed CBPR principles in delivering diet and physical activity modification program. Out of the 35 people who finished ten sessions of availed information necessary for the study, 48% of the population lost at least 5% of baseline weight, 26% of the population lost 7% and above, and 14% of the sample population lost their baseline weight of 10% and above (Coughlin & Smith, 2017).
Also, Goldfinger et al.,in collaboration with academic community leaders,studied a pre-post evaluation on a healthy diet and physical activity. The subjects included 26 overweight African Americans and were adult church members in Harlem. The study subjects lost an average of 4.4 pounds in 3 months, 8.4 pounds in 7 months, and 9.8 pounds in a year (Coughlin & Smith, 2017).
The evidence above indicates that physical activity and dietary measures are effective in weight management among African Americans. The study will recommend diet and exercise programs,for they are effective in weight loss, thus eventually decreasing BMI among African Americans. The evidence also suggests that the two strategies are powerful together than when one is done alone. Diet and exercise programs promote weight loss and prevent the gain over time (Galbreath et al., 2018). Also, regular physical activity helps achieve balance, strength, and ensures overall fitness. The combined effects of these strategies also do away with the risks of developing co-morbid conditions that would be linked to obesity and overweight.
My study will establish the effectiveness of physical activity and dietary measures in weight loss and control among African Americans. Since this area is underexplored by existing literature, my study seeks to provide more information for these specific interventions.
The study will recruit 50 African Americans as participants from any faith organizations that have African Americans. The study will select church membersages 20 to 65 and subject them to physical activity and dietary measures while monitoring their BMI. Faith organizations help tackle weight gain through a healthy diet.
The primary variable of the study will bethe impact on weight/BMI of African Americans. The predictor variables of the study will include diet and exercise program.
Collection Plan and Timeline
The program intends to run for three months, and so the data will be collected for the three months to check the effectiveness of physical activity and dietary measures on weight loss. The data collection plan will make use of observations and interviews. The data will be collected in different phases to determine periodical weight loss upon subjection to the measures.
Timeframe Average weight loss
Coughlin, S. S., & Smith, S. A. (2017). Community-based participatory research to
promote healthy diet and nutrition and prevent and control obesity among African-Americans: a literature review. Journal of racial and ethnic health disparities, 4(2), 259-268.
Friedenberg, F. K., Tang, D. M., Mendonca, T., &Vanar, V. (2011). Predictive value of
body mass index at age 18 on adulthood obesity: results of a prospective survey of an urban population. The American journal of the medical sciences, 342(5), 371-382.
Galbreath, M., Campbell, B., La Bounty, P., Bunn, J., Dove, J., Harvey, T., … &Jagim,
A. (2018). Effects of adherence to a higher protein diet on weight loss, markers of health, and functional capacity in older women participating in a resistance-based exercise program. Nutrients, 10(8), 1070.
Zhou, Y. E., Buchowski, M. S., Akatue, R. A., Wu, J., Liu, J., & Hargreaves, M. K.
(2018). Physical Activity Levels and Cardiometabolic Risks in Obese African American Adults: A Pilot Intervention Study. Journal of health care for the poor and underserved, 29(3), 1027-1045.
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