Diabetes and Obesity Risks in African American Young Adult Freshmen Attending a Historically Black College/University
- Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 19, Number 4, November 2008
- pp. 1096-1118
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Convincing African American and other young adults that obesity increases their risk for diabetes and its complications is challenging for health educators and clinicians. At a historically Black university (HBCU) this question was examined, Do overweight and obese African American freshmen have higher risks for diabetes through low physical activity or toning and poor nutritional habits? Survey data found 40% of the 101 respondents sampled there were obese (defined as body mass index of 30 or more kg/m2), which is a higher proportion of obesity than found in other college health surveys. Scores reflecting higher risks of diabetes mellitus were significantly related to higher BMI values and low aerobic physical activity. Students had low levels of physical activity and toning than reported in general college populations. To reduce diabetes-disparity risks and obesity-related behaviors, African American younger adult freshmen may benefit from effective intervention strategies targeting them.