Journal Article

Effectiveness of a bilingual heart health program for Greek-Australian women

WENDY J. BROWN, CHRISTINA LEE and REBECCA OYOMOPITO

in Health Promotion International

Volume 11, issue 2, pages 117-125
Published in print June 1996 | ISSN: 0957-4824
e-ISSN: 1460-2245 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/heapro/11.2.117
Effectiveness of a bilingual heart health program for Greek-Australian women

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Women from Southern European countries have the highest body mass index and physical inactivity levels of any of Australia's migrant groups. Health promotion programs aimed at the wider community often fail to reach these women because of language and cultural barriers. The project examined the impact of a 12-week minimal-intervention heart health program on a community sample of Greek-Australian women. The program, conducted in a bilingual, interactive format and held in a Greek community centre, aimed to improve cardiovascular health and decrease obesity by increasing physical activity and reducing dietary saturated fat intake. Participants (n=26) showed significant decreases in body mass index, skinfold measurements, exercising heart rates and diastolic blood pressure, which were well maintained at follow-up; these changes were not observed in a comparison group (n=22). The project demonstrated that health promotion programs tailored specifically for groups of women from non-English-speaking backgrounds (NESB) can be effective in modifying cardiovascular risk factors if an effort is made to address sociocultural and linguistic barriers to participation.

Keywords: cardiovascular disease; exercise; women

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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