Introduction: Latino communities are disproportionately affected by type 2 diabetes and experience disparities in access to diabetes prevention programs. The purpose of this study was to test the preliminary efficacy of a culturally grounded, diabetes prevention program for high-risk Latino families delivered through an integrated research-practice partnership.
Study design: The integrated research-practice partnership was established in a predominantly Latino community and consisted of a Federally Qualified Health Center, a YMCA, an accredited diabetes education program, and an academic research center. Data were collected and analyzed from 2015 to 2018.
Setting/participants: Latino families consisting of a parent with an obese child between age 8 and 12 years.
Intervention: The 12-week lifestyle intervention included nutrition education and behavioral skills training (60 minutes, once/week) and physical activity classes (60 minutes, three times/week) delivered at a YMCA.
Main outcome measures: Outcomes included measures of adiposity (BMI, waist circumference, and body fat); HbA1c; and weight-specific quality of life.
Results: Over the course of the 2-year project period, 58 families (parents n=59, children n=68) were enrolled with 36% of parents and 29% of children meeting the criteria for prediabetes at baseline. Feasibility and acceptability were high, with 83% of enrolled families completing the program, 91% of the intervention sessions attended, and 100% of families stating they would recommend the program. The intervention led to significant decreases in percentage body fat among parents (46.4% [SD=10.8] to 43.5% [SD=10.5], p=0.001) as well as children (43.1% [SD=8.0] to 41.8% [SD=7.2], p=0.03). Additionally, HbA1c was significantly reduced in parents (5.6% [SD=0.4] to 5.5% [SD=0.3], p=0.03), and remained stable in children (5.5% [SD=0.3] vs 5.5% [SD=0.3], p>0.05). Significant improvements in quality of life were reported in parents (64.6 [SD=15.8] to 71.0 [SD=13.7], p=0.001) and children (69.7 [SD=15.8] to 72.6 [SD=13.7], p=0.05).
Conclusions: These findings support the preliminary efficacy of an integrated research-practice partnership to meet the diabetes prevention needs of high-risk Latino families within a vulnerable community.
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