Abstract P265: Neighborhood Environments and Weight Change Among Individuals Participating in a Weight Loss Intervention
Introduction: Studies have shown that neighborhood factors (e.g., socioeconomic disadvantage, food sources) have been associated with weight. However, neighborhood factors are often overlooked in weight loss interventions, and few studies examine the influence of neighborhoods on weight change. We examined the neighborhood environment and its association with weight change in a 12-mo. weight loss intervention.
Hypothesis: Individuals who live in obesogenic neighborhood environments (e.g., low income, absence of grocery stores) would be less likely to lose weight over time compared to those who live in healthy environments.
Methods: This analysis included data on body weight assessed at 0 and 6 mos and calculated as percent change. Residential address at baseline was geocoded using ArcGIS software and assigned the appropriate census tract. Key neighborhood measures included grocery store and restaurant density, proportion Black and low income, and an index of neighborhood socioeconomic disadvantage. We tested differences in mean weight changes across the various neighborhood factors.
Results: The sample (N=127) was 91% female, 80% White, mean age 51 years, and mean BMI 34. The mean percentage weight loss was 8.8% ±6%. Participants tended to live in neighborhoods that were predominately White, middle to high education, and low poverty. The proportion of Black residents in the neighborhood was the only neighborhood factor significantly associated with weight change. Neighborhoods with the lowest proportion of Black residents had the highest density of grocery stores and restaurants, were the highest income and had the lowest socioeconomic disadvantage score (see table below).
Conclusion: Our findings are preliminary; however, they suggest future interventions need to address neighborhood factors to better understand how to improve weight loss for all population groups. This study should be replicated in a larger cohort with representation of individuals from various neighborhood types.
Author Disclosures: D.D. Mendez: None. L.J. Ewing: None. Y. Zheng: None. C.C. Imes: None. R.W. Goode: None. J. Mancino: None. E. Music: None. L.E. Burke: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.