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Do Black Women’s Religious Beliefs About Body Image Influence Their Confidence in Their Ability to Lose Weight?
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  • Alternative Title:
    Prev Chronic Dis
  • Description:
    Introduction Black women are disproportionately burdened by obesity but maintain body satisfaction and strong religious commitment. Although faith-based weight-loss interventions have been effective at promoting weight loss among blacks, little is known about how body image and religious views contribute to weight-related beliefs among religious black women. The purpose of this study was to examine whether demographic and health history factors, religious involvement, and beliefs about body image could explain motivation and confidence to lose weight among a church-affiliated sample of black women. Methods We recruited 240 church-affiliated black women aged 18 to 80 years (average age, 55 y; SD, 12.3) in 2014 from 6 black churches that participated in a larger study, Project FIT (Faith Influencing Transformation), a clustered, diabetes/heart disease/stroke intervention among black women and men. We used baseline data from Project FIT to conduct a cross-sectional study consisting of a survey. Variables approaching significance in preliminary correlation and χ2 analyses were included in 2 multiple linear regression models examining motivation and confidence in ability to lose weight. Results In final regression models, body mass index was associated with motivation to lose weight (β = 0.283, P < .001), and beliefs about body image in relation to God predicted confidence to lose weight (β = 0.180, P = .01). Conclusion Faith-based, weight-loss interventions targeting black women should emphasize physical well-being and highlight the health benefits of weight management rather than the benefits of altering physical appearance and should promote positive beliefs about body image, particularly relating to God.
  • Pubmed ID:
    29049021
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC5652238
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