Results of the Heart Healthy and Ethnically Relevant Lifestyle trial: a cardiovascular risk reduction intervention for African American women attending community health centers

Am J Public Health. 2011 Oct;101(10):1914-21. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2011.300151. Epub 2011 Aug 18.


Objectives: We evaluated a theory-based lifestyle intervention targeting physical activity and dietary fat intake among African American women at high risk for cardiovascular disease.

Methods: The Heart Healthy and Ethnically Relevant Lifestyle trial (2005-2008) randomly assigned 266 low-income African American women aged 35 years and older who were patients of South Carolina community health care centers into comprehensive or standard care interventions. Comprehensive participants received standard care (stage-matched provider counseling and assisted goal setting) plus 12 months of telephone counseling and tailored newsletters. Primary outcomes were 6- and 12-month self-reported physical activity and dietary fat intake.

Results: Comprehensive participants were more likely than were standard care participants to decrease total physical activity (odds ratio [OR] = 3.13; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.18, 8.25) and increase leisure-time physical activity (OR = 3.82; 95% CI = 1.41, 10.3) at 6 months (no 12-month differences). Mean reductions in Dietary Risk Assessment score occurred in both groups but were greater among comprehensive participants than among standard care participants (6 months, -8.50 vs -5.34; 12 months, -7.16 vs -3.37; P < .001).

Conclusions: The comprehensive intervention improved women's leisure-time physical activity and dietary fat intake, highlighting a replicable model to help primary care providers implement lifestyle counseling.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • African Americans*
  • Aged
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Community Health Centers*
  • Counseling
  • Diet Surveys
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Activity
  • Risk Reduction Behavior*
  • South Carolina


  • Dietary Fats