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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Focus groups show need for diabetes awareness education among African Americans


The UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources Health Promotion Workgroup assessed diabetes awareness among African Americans at risk for the disease. Workgroup members conducted focus group discussions with the target population in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Stanislaus counties. Although obesity is considered a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes, most participants cited poor dietary patterns, rather than body weight, as the most important factor in the high rate of diabetes among African Americans. Food preferences, family pressure and lack of social support were most often mentioned as obstacles to healthful dietary changes. Many felt that not enough information about diabetes was reaching the black community and voiced the need for culturally sensitive education, delivered through community-based channels.

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