Black and Low Income Women Need Tailored Weight Loss Programs

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Weight Loss Programs

Weight loss programs need to be race and income specific because weight control experiences are far different between black and white women and affluent and poor women, according to a recent study.

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Researchers put together focus groups made up of obese women and divided by race and socioeconomic status. They found most of the women had been able to lose weight in the past, but they failed to keep it off. The white women surveyed said physical activity was their key to weight-loss success, while the black women put more emphasis on food choices. Black women in particular said weight loss programs that incorporated spiritual and psychological support would be helpful. And the low-income women surveyed said cost had been a barrier to effective weight loss for them. The study's authors said this points to a need to promote "creative strategies that educate low-[income] women on cost-effective ways to eat healthy and engage in physical activity..."

Black and low-income women are at higher risk for obesity than the general population, but tailored weight loss programs could help reduce the risk, the study's authors said.

[From: "Racial and Socioeconomic Differences in the Weight-Loss Experiences of Obese Women." Contact: Esa M. Davis, MD, MPH, Department of Family Medicine

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