University of Southern Indiana, USA
Title: Addressing Chronic Disease Risk Factors among Urban Low-Income Adults: The Role of Nutrition Education in Community Health Centers
Biography: Serah W. Theuri
Poor access to affordable and healthy food compel households with limited resources to stretch their food budget by purchasing inexpensive, high-calorie foods. Research evidence indicates that low-income and food insecure households are vulnerable to obesity and obesity related conditions due to factors such as limited resources, lack of access to healthy and affordable foods, greater exposure to marketing of obesity-promoting products and limited access to health care. This study examined chronic disease risk factors among low-income adults, while providing individualized nutrition education at the University of Southern Indiana (USI) Community Health Center in Evansville, Indiana, U.S.A. This session will present the preliminary results obtained from anthropometric (weight, height, body mass index), dietary habits (weekly consumption of eight food groups to detect foods high in total fat, saturated and cholesterol) and clinical data (total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, fasting glucose, glucose A1C, blood pressure) of the study sample. Findings from this sample highlight the staggering rates of obesity and poor glucose A1C control as significant. Findings call attention to the need to provide sustained nutrition interventions to manage weight and blood glucose. It has been suggested that adults with highest risk for obesity-related complications are least likely to access weight-loss treatments due to lack of awareness or ability to afford the treatment. Research and practice implications will be discussed.