Community-based participatory research to design a faith-enhanced diabetes prevention program: The Better Me Within randomized trial.
Heather Kitzman-Ulrich Ph.D.
Kitzman, H., L. Dodgen, A. Mamun, J. L. Slater, G. King, D. Slater, A. King, S. Mandapati and M. DeHaven (2017). “Community-based participatory research to design a faith-enhanced diabetes prevention program: The better me within randomized trial.” Contemp Clin Trials 62: 77-90.
Reducing obesity positively impacts diabetes and cardiovascular risk; however, evidence-based lifestyle programs, such as the diabetes prevention program (DPP), show reduced effectiveness in African American (AA) women. In addition to an attenuated response to lifestyle programs, AA women also demonstrate high rates of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. To address these disparities, enhancements to evidence-based lifestyle programs for AA women need to be developed and evaluated with culturally relevant and rigorous study designs. This study describes a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach to design a novel faith-enhancement to the DPP for AA women. A long-standing CBPR partnership designed the faith-enhancement from focus group data (N=64 AA adults) integrating five components: a brief pastor led sermon, memory verse, in class or take-home faith activity, promises to remember, and scripture and prayer integrated into participant curriculum and facilitator materials. The faith components were specifically linked to weekly DPP learning objectives to strategically emphasize behavioral skills with religious principles. Using a CBPR approach, the Better Me Within trial was able to enroll 12 churches, screen 333 AA women, and randomize 221 (Mage=48.8+/-11.2; MBMI=36.7+/-8.4; 52% technical or high school) after collection of objective eligibility measures. A prospective, randomized, nested by church, design will be used to evaluate the faith-enhanced DPP as compared to a standard DPP on weight, diabetes and cardiovascular risk, over a 16-week intervention and 10-month follow up. This study will provide essential data to guide enhancements to evidence-based lifestyle programs for AA women who are at high risk for chronic disease.