Publication Abstract

Authors: Resnicow K, Davis R, Zhang N, Tolsma D, Alexander G, Wiese C, Cross WE Jr, Anderson JP, Calvi J, Strecher V

Title: Tailoring a fruit and vegetable intervention on ethnic identity: results of a randomized study.

Journal: Health Psychol 28(4):394-403

Date: 2009 Jul

Abstract: OBJECTIVE: Many targeted interventions have been developed and tested with African Americans (AA); however, AAs are a highly heterogeneous group. One characteristic that varies across AAs is Ethnic Identity (EI). Little research has been conducted on how to incorporate EI into the design of health messages and programs. DESIGN: We tested whether tailoring a print-based fruit and vegetable (F & V) intervention on EI would enhance program impact. AA adults were recruited from two integrated healthcare delivery systems and then randomized to receive three newsletters focused on F & V behavior change over three months. One set of newsletters was tailored only on demographic and social cognitive variables (control condition), whereas the other (experimental condition) was additionally tailored on EI. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome for the study was F & V intake, assessed at baseline and three months later using the composite of two brief self-report frequency measures. RESULTS: A total of 560 eligible participants were enrolled, of which 468 provided complete 3-month follow-up data. The experimental group increased their daily mean F & V intake by 1.1 servings compared to .8 servings in the control group (p = .13). Afrocentric experimental group participants showed a 1.4 increase in F & V servings per day compared to a .43 servings per day increase among Afrocentric controls (p < .05). CONCLUSIONS: Although the overall between-group effects were not significant, tailoring dietary messages on ethnic identity may improve intervention impact for some AA subgroups.