Archive for July, 2012
Check out these videos of a few Latino families who are improving their healthy lifestyle habits.
A healthy change in her family’s eating habits has influenced eleven-year-old Alejandra to dream of being a chef when she grows up:
When Maya, age 7, learned of her high triglyceride levels, she and her family changed their eating habits to better manage her cholesterol:
The videos are from Be Smart. Be Well.
Latinas tend to have positive attitudes and strong interest in genetic testing for breast cancer risk, yet lacked general knowledge about testing, its risks and benefits, according to a new study led by researchers at the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, the team behind SaludToday.
The study, published recently in the journal Community Medicine & Health Education, conducted focus groups with 58 Latinas in Hidalgo County, a largely Latino part of South Texas.
Researchers used analyzed focus group responses and themes and uncovered several cultural factors, such as religious beliefs, that impacted Latinas’ decisions to get genetic testing.
“Key Latino values—religiosity, importance of family and the influential role of health care providers in health decisions—should be considered when designing strategies to deliver culturally adapted risk information to increase and ensure Latinas’ understanding of breast cancer genetic testing during their decision-making processes,” said Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez, the study’s corresponding author and director of the IHPR at the Health Science Center.
Genetic testing for breast cancer risk may facilitate better-informed decisions regarding cancer prevention, risk reduction, early detection, and better determination of risk for family members.
However, among women who are tested, less than 4% are Latina.
Finding reasons for Latinas’ low participation was the goal of Dr. Ramirez and her team, which included IHPR researchers Dr. Patricia Chalela and Edgar Muñoz and investigators from the University of North Texas Health Science Center and the University of Texas-Pan American.
The researchers found that none of the focus group participants had ever had a genetic test, and most didn’t know what the test was or how it is done.
Most women, after learning what a genetic test was, indicated they would get a genetic test in the next six months if it were available—at no or low cost—to be able to prevent cancer through healthy lifestyle changes or act as soon as possible to treat disease.
But among some of lesser-educated focus group participants, lack of accurate information about testing and cultural beliefs may hinder their use of genetic testing for breast cancer.
For example, some Latina participants viewed God as the only one who can cure cancer, which might impact their preventive health behaviors. And given Latinos’ tendency to trust the advice of health care providers, some Latinas who lacked health insurance or access to a regular doctor may have fewer opportunities to learn about genetic testing.
“Further research is needed to identify effective ways to communicate genetic risk susceptibility information to Latinas to help them make informed testing decisions,” Ramirez said.
Read more about the study here.
Latina girls are learning about fitness, nutrition, healthy body image and other valuable lessons at a new summer day camp called Adelante Chicas at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore.
The camp, a three-week event for Latina girls from third grade to high school, is a youth development arm of Oregon nonprofit Adelante Mujeres, which provides holistic education, career development and support services for low-income Latinas and their families, OregonLive.com reports.
Girls at the camp participate in yoga, historic walks, nutrition lessons and even get to transform Spinach into a fruit smoothie.
High incidence of heart disease among Latinas is directly related to a higher risk for metabolic syndrome, according to a study by Dr. Fatima Rodriguez of Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Voxxi reports.
Metabolic syndrome is a combination of factors—high blood pressure, increased levels of blood sugar, excessive body fat, and abnormal cholesterol levels—that lead to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
Rodriguez’ study, published in Family Practice News, collected information from the health screenings of 18,000 women and complete medical histories for 7,000 women.
Her findings, according to the report, include:
Researchers found an overall prevalence of metabolic syndrome for 35 percent of evaluated women; however, Rodriguez states “there was a disproportionate burden for Hispanic womenand black women.”
Forty percent of Hispanic women were classified as having metabolic syndrome compared to 39 percent of blacks, 31 percent of whites, and 29 percent of women who identified themselves as “other.”
The research also revealed most of the metabolic syndrome seen in Latinas was related to abnormal lipid levels, most notably among the youngest participants.
“Many of these women have high triglyceride levels and low HDL levels … and this disparity was most pronounced in young women,” Rodriguez said.
Read more here.
- a videonovela teach about diabetes? (Pg 1)
- a non-exerciser become a promoter? (Pg 3)
- activity breaks keep kids fit? (Pg 5)
- new policy tools aid your work? (Pg 6)
Find out in the latest E-newsletter from Salud America!, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) network to prevent obesity among Latino kids.
Also find lots more news, research and funding inside the E-newsletter, and discover the preliminary research results of a quartet of Salud America! grantees working in Latino after-school programs, community recreational centers and more.
Salud America! is funded by RWJF and directed by the Institute for Health Promotion Research at The UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, which developed SaludToday.
To sign up to receive Salud America! E-newsletters, go here.
The Partnership at Drugfree.org announced the launch of new tools, accessible at HablaConTusHijos, for Hispanic parents and families who are struggling to address drug and alcohol abuse by their children.
New research from the Partnership Attitude Tracking Study (PATS) shows that Hispanic teens are using drugs at alarmingly higher levels when compared to teens from other ethnic groups.
About 54% of Hispanic teens reported having used an illicit drug in the past year, versus 42% of African-American and 39% of Caucasian teens.
The comprehensive tools at HablaConTusHijos provide effective, yet easy-to-use, resources equipping Hispanic parents and grandparents to take action in preventing teen substance abuse.
Clear, understandable content is brought to life with customized checklists, how-to guides and powerful videos featuring parents and experts discussing various aspects of substance abuse and addiction for those who are at different stages in raising their children.
This new web resource was made possible with major support from MetLife Foundation.
Blacks and Hispanics are among the most likely in the United States to be very obese, according to a new Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.
About 6% of blacks and 3.4% of Hispanics fall into the highest Body Mass Index (BMI) category (<40.00), compared to 3.1% of whites and 1% of Asians.
A normal BMI is between 18.50 and 24.99. A BMI of 25.00 to less than 30.00 is overweight/pre-obese. BMIs of 30.00 or higher fall into one of three classes of obesity: Obese class I = 30.00 to 34.99; Obese class II = 35.00 to 39.99; Obese class III = 40.00 or higher.
Those with BMIs of 40 or higher are also frequently considered "morbidly obese."
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index findings stem from interviews with more than 800,000 American adults aged 18 and older. Gallup calculates respondents’ BMIs using the standard formula based on their self-reported height and weight.
Health Impact Project: Advancing Smarter Policies for Healthier Communities, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, encourages the use of health impact assessments (HIA) to help decision-makers identify the potential health effects of proposed policies, projects, and programs, and make recommendations that enhance their health benefits and minimize their adverse effects and any associated costs.
This call for proposals supports two types of initiatives:
- HIA demonstration projects that inform a specific decision and help to build the case for the value of HIA; and
- HIA program grants to enable organizations with previous HIA experience to conduct HIAs and develop sustainable, self-supporting HIA programs at the local, state, or tribal level.
Brief program proposals are due Sept. 14, 2012. Demonstration project proposals are due Sept. 28, 2012.
Go here for more info.
Check out this new infographic from Active Living Research.
Among the 50.7 million U.S. Hispanics, nearly two-thirds (65%), or 33 million, self-identify as being of Mexican origin, according to new statistical profiles from the Pew Hispanic Center.
No other Hispanic subgroup rivals the size of the Mexican-origin population.
Puerto Ricans, the nation’s second largest Hispanic origin group, make up just 9% of the total Hispanic population in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Overall, the 10 largest Hispanic origin groups—Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Salvadorans, Dominicans, Guatemalans, Colombians, Hondurans, Ecuadorians and Peruvians—make up 92% of the U.S. Hispanic population.
Six Hispanic origin groups have populations greater than 1 million.
See these stats and more here.