Journal of Community Health

, Volume 41, Issue 1, pp 87–96 | Cite as

Community Trial of a Faith-Based Lifestyle Intervention to Prevent Diabetes Among African-Americans

  • Richard W. Sattin
  • Lovoria B. Williams
  • James Dias
  • Jane T. Garvin
  • Lucy Marion
  • Thomas V. Joshua
  • Andrea Kriska
  • M. Kaye Kramer
  • K. M. Venkat Narayan
Original Paper


About 75 % of African-Americans (AAs) ages 20 or older are overweight and nearly 50 % are obese, but community-based programs to reduce diabetes risk in AAs are rare. Our objective was to reduce weight and fasting plasma glucose (FPG) and increase physical activity (PA) from baseline to week-12 and to month-12 among overweight AA parishioners through a faith-based adaptation of the Diabetes Prevention Program called Fit Body and Soul (FBAS). We conducted a single-blinded, cluster randomized, community trial in 20 AA churches enrolling 604 AAs, aged 20–64 years with BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2 and without diabetes. The church (and their parishioners) was randomized to FBAS or health education (HE). FBAS participants had a significant difference in adjusted weight loss compared with those in HE (2.62 vs. 0.50 kg, p = 0.001) at 12-weeks and (2.39 vs. −0.465 kg, p = 0.005) at 12-months and were more likely (13 %) than HE participants (3 %) to achieve a 7 % weight loss (p < 0.001) at 12-weeks and a 7 % weight loss (19 vs. 8 %, p < 0.001) at 12-months. There were no significant differences in FPG and PA between arms. Of the 15.2 % of participants with baseline pre-diabetes, those in FBAS had, however, a significant decline in FPG (10.93 mg/dl) at 12-weeks compared with the 4.22 mg/dl increase in HE (p = 0.017), and these differences became larger at 12-months (FBAS, 12.38 mg/dl decrease; HE, 4.44 mg/dl increase) (p = 0.021). Our faith-based adaptation of the DPP led to a significant reduction in weight overall and in FPG among pre-diabetes participants. Identifier NCT01730196.


Obesity Translation research African-American Diabetes prevention 



This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health, R18DK082401, which had no role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; or preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

We also confirm that there are no known conflicts of interest associated with this publication and there has been no significant financial support for this work that could have influenced its outcome.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard W. Sattin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lovoria B. Williams
    • 2
  • James Dias
    • 3
  • Jane T. Garvin
    • 2
  • Lucy Marion
    • 2
  • Thomas V. Joshua
    • 2
  • Andrea Kriska
    • 4
  • M. Kaye Kramer
    • 4
  • K. M. Venkat Narayan
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Emergency Medicine, Medical College of GeorgiaGeorgia Regents UniversityAugustaUSA
  2. 2.College of NursingGeorgia Regents UniversityAugustaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Medical College of GeorgiaGeorgia Regents UniversityAugustaUSA
  4. 4.Department of EpidemiologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  5. 5.Hubert Department of Global HealthEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA

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